If you are unable or unwilling to change the way you think, you will never really be able to change the way you live. I strongly believe that if you never change your mind, you will never be able to change your life. The fact is, where the mind goes, the man follows. When your thoughts are negative, resentful or bitter, you'll find these characteristics in abundance in your life—and they'll remain in your life until you make the commitment to get them out of your mind.
To illustrate, let's take a look at the seeds in fruit. The seeds found in an apple, when planted, will only produce apple trees—nothing else. And the only fruit those trees will bear is apples. You'll never find one type of seed producing a different kind of fruit. If the seeds or thoughts in your life are negative and destructive, the fruit in your life will be the same way.
There's a great verse in the Bible that backs up this point. The apostle Paul says, Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you] (Romans 12:2 The Amplified Bible).
Notice Paul says that the way you change yourself is by renewing your mind—changing the way you think. You must change the way you think before you can change the way you live. It all starts in your mind. Narrow thinking will always lead to a narrow life. God desires that we have a big, free, wonderful, and abundant life. But before you can have a life like that, you're going to have to have a mind like that.
My mind has always been the key to how my life has been. It used to be that when I woke up in the morning, before I even got out of bed, my mind would already be working overtime, setting me up for a bad day. I would think of all the things the people in my life weren't doing for me and all the ways they disappointed me. I would think about all the things I didn't like about myself and how I could get other people to do what I wanted them to do. I was really messed up, and because of my wrong thinking, my days were destined to be full of disappointment and discouragement. There was no way for me to have a good day when I started it with that kind of negative thinking pattern.
One of the greatest breakthroughs I ever had in my life was when I discovered that I could choose what I thought about. I could wake up in the morning, lie in my bed, and instead of thinking about me, I could actually just talk to God and say, "Now, God, what can I do for somebody else today? What can I do to make a difference in someone else's life?"
I have also learned to be thankful to God for the things I have instead of being so consumed by thoughts of what I don't have. I thank Him for my husband and children. I thank Him for my home and my ministry. I thank Him for church.… Being grateful makes me realize that not everyone is blessed with the things I am blessed with. This is humbling and makes me excited about starting another day of serving Him.
Someone once said that one of the definitions of insanity is doing the same thing every day but expecting different results. You're not alone in wanting to change your life in some way. There are lots of people who want to make big changes in the way they live. But unless they are willing to change the way they think first, they'll never have the life they really want.
You can do it! In fact, YOU are the only one who can do it. No one can change your thinking for you. You, and only you, have the power to change the way you think. You can choose what you allow your mind to think about, and you can change your life.
Philippians 4:8 says, …whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things [fix your minds on them]. As you meditate on God's Word, He will help you to succeed in making the changes you need to make.
Decide today to have the power of RIGHT thinking—the power to change your life!
Author/teacher Joyce Meyer has been helping people overcome life's problems through biblical keys to practical Christian living since 1976. Her radio and television programs are broadcast throughout the United States and much of the world. For additional information, you may contact Joyce Meyer Ministries at P.O. Box 655, Fenton, Missouri 63026 or visit www.joycemeyer.org.
© 2007 Printed with permission of Joyce Meyer Ministries