Weekly Thought – February 20, 2018
Fred greatly admired Albert Einstein’s philosophy of coming to the simplest solution (yet without becoming simplistic). He reduced difficult situations into workable formulas. Although he adamantly eschewed those who would be “formulaic” in his word. The nuances of life were masterfully handled by him.
Please pray for the BWFLI team as they travel to East Texas to introduce the What’s Next Roundtable at Jarvis Christian College on March 2, 3. We appreciate your partnership.
Formula for Understanding
I want to give you a little formula which you can experiment with and see if it will help you like it has helped me.
“First the thought, then the mood, then the rationalized action.” By the I mean, first the thought comes in our mind and if we keep it long enough and endow it with validity, it drops down into our heart, creating a mood. Then the mood rationalizes the action. For example, when we harbor anger as a thought it turns into a mood and it rationalizes a hostile action.
We start by keeping that thought out of the heart. As long as we keep it in the mind it will be fleeting. The Jewish people knew nothing happened until they combined the mind and the emotion. They said, “Guard the heart, for out of it comes the issues of life.”
But it is our responsibility to dislodge the thought before it can get to the heart, creating a mood and ultimately rationalizing an action. I am not suggesting we have the ability to completely clear our mind of thoughts, because I know this just isn’t true. But I do believe we can shove the wrong thoughts by replacing it with something worthwhile.
There’s a tremendous danger when we advocate creating vacuums in people’s minds. There are philosophical movements that encourage blank slates. I do not believe this is healthy or even Biblical. Remember the story of the man who the evil spirit and he cleansed himself of that spirit. The evil spirit “hung around” to find another place to inhabit. Finding none, he returned to the original host seized on the opportunity to make a home for himself and many others. Scripture tells us, “the man was worse off than he was before.”
It is important to re-program our minds to exchange the bad for good. The Apostle Paul was very aware of this procedure. In Philippians 4 he directs the church to “think about such things as truth, nobility, rightness, purity, loveliness, admirableness, excellence and praiseworthiness.” We are not called to go around empty-headed.
We grow in our spiritual life by the transformation of our minds. Protecting our minds is the first step in godly action.
I was on the program with Bob Richards, the Olympic pole vaulter and decathlon champion. As he talked the rather portly executive sitting next to me leaned over and said, “I am not a champion on the outside, but I am on the inside.” The disciplines which Bob Richards developed were critical to his athletic prowess – and a good thing. But it is also crucial to recognize internal championship qualities which will last a lifetime. A disciplined mind is a great start.
This week think about: 1) How would I implement Fred’s formula? 2) What guards do I have in place to keep thoughts from progressing to destructive actions? 3) Who models internal championship for me?
Words of Wisdom: “It is important to re-program out minds to exchange the bad for good.”
Wisdom from the Word: “Brothers and sisters, do not be children in your thinking. Instead, be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature.” (1 Corinthians 14:20 NET Bible)