I opened up my website tonight and realized it had been four months since I had written anything and posted it.
My first thought was failure. My goal is to be consistent with this.
My second thought was a question, “How did four months go by so quickly and I didn’t even realize it?”
My next thought was, “MY SON IS TURNING 10 in a month and soon he will be leaving my house!”
My next thought was “I don’t know if I’m being the right kind of mom for my kids. I don’t have very much time left with them.” (That last one is ridiculous because they are only almost 7 and almost 10.)
This is how my mind works though, friends. Sometimes the path it takes from one single thought to a mountain of thoughts makes me feel like a crazy person.
I am fairly certain I am not the only one this happens to.
We girls, especially, tend to to let one thought lead us down a rapid path of self doubt, assumptions of others, and exaggerated stories in our head which are often not even close to the truth.
I do this all the time.
I do it with ministry life.
I do it with housework. My floors need to be swept, oh my word, all of my baseboards need to be scrubbed and painted, yikes my carpet is unraveling and looks like a trampled barn floor, and my mind allows one thought to spiral into a deluge of disasters in my home that need to be dealt with NOW. All because there were some crumbs on the floor that needed to be swept up which could be dealt with in 5 minutes.
I tend to let this happen in my marriage, too. One tiny comment from my husband annoys me, and it easily becomes the start of a mental list of all the things I think are struggles and failures in our marriage.
Instead of dealing with the one tiny issue right here in front of me here and now, I allow it to become a mountain of feelings that feel insurmountable to deal with.
I think we do this in friendships. In relationships.
We don’t deal with the one thought, or the one issue, or the one comment, or the one hurt feeling. Instead we let it pile up. Or we let it fester. Or we let our minds make it into something more than it really is. I am going to go out on a limb here and say I think Satan uses this to cause dissension and ruin friendships and relationships.
I don’t have a long, carefully crafted answer, just one verse that I felt the Holy Spirit whisper into my soul as I begin to write this.
2 Corinthians 10:5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
There is so much in this verse. I could preach a whole message on this one verse. But for today, we’re keeping it real simple.
This verse says “every thought”. So one thought comes into our mind. It could be anything, a lie we tell ourselves, a hurt feeling, a comment made to us, a thought about our dirty floors, you get it.
We deal with THAT ONE THOUGHT. This verse says “take captive”. To me this means we tie it up. We don’t let it mingle with the other thoughts. We don’t add it to a prison cell of other lies or doubts we have held onto. We don’t add it to a mountain of other thoughts. We take it captive and deal with it. We deal with that one thought before it leads us to another one that leads us down a destructive path.
Let’s do this, girls.
Let’s not let our thoughts lead us into downward spirals.
Let’s take one thought captive and then the next one and the next one.
Let’s not let one temper tantrum our child throws lead us down the path of feeling like we are failing as a mom.
Let’s not let one disagreement with a friend lead us down a path that makes us wonder if our friendship should end.
Let’s not let one annoying act from a spouse lead us down a path of simmering all day long about all of the things that annoy us about him.
Let’s not let one or two new wrinkles when we look in the mirror lead us down a path of thinking we are less than we used to be.
I believe we can do this. I think we win and Satan loses when we do this. I think this simple action could lead to better marriages, stronger friendships and stronger more confident selves. I believe in us and more importantly God believes in us. It doesn’t surprise Him that we struggle with this. It’s why He gave us this instruction. We can do this.