Old Voices

‘In him we…become the righteousness of God’ 2 Corinthians 5:21 NIV

Gandhi once said, ‘I refuse to let anyone walk through my mind with dirty feet.’ Yet that’s exactly what we do when we listen to old voices of condemnation. A respected author writes: ‘Negative accusations take various forms. ‘You’re not as spiritual as you should be… You didn’t work hard enough last week… God can’t bless you because of your past.’ Those are lies… We don’t have to live condemned when we make mistakes. Even Paul said, ‘I do not do the good things I want to do… I do the bad things I do not want to do.’ (Romans 7:19 NCV). There is a time to repent, and a time to shake it off and press forward. You can’t change the past. And if you live in guilt today because of yesterday, you won’t have the strength to live in victory. The Bible says, ‘Put on the breastplate of God’s approval’ (see Ephesians 6:14). The breastplate covers your heart, the centre of your being, the way you think and feel about yourself. If you’re thinking, ‘I don’t have much of a future. I’ve blown it too often. God couldn’t be pleased with me,’ that’s ‘the accuser’, and he has no authority over you.’ God says he’s been ‘cast down’ (Revelation 12:10 KJV). So stand your ground, and remind him that ‘God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God’. Like all of us, you’ve probably made your fair share of mistakes. But positionally God sees you ‘in Christ’, so you’re ‘complete’, ‘justified’, and ‘accepted’. Conditionally you’re a work-in-progress – and He won’t give up on you!

This is reproduced with kind permission from United Christian Broadcasters (UCB) Word for Today. Copies can be obtained from them at UCB Operations Centre, Westport Road, Stoke on Trent, ST6 4JF

Learn to think ‘right’

‘The thoughts of the righteous are right.’ Proverbs 12:5 NKJV

Your mind can work for you or against you. When it works for you, it helps you to stay positive, reach your goals, and enjoy each day. But when it works against you, it can make you negative and discouraged, hold you back, and cause you to think thoughts that result in self-sabotage. So teach your mind to work for you instead of against you. An important way to do this is to make an intentional decision that you’ll begin to think positively – in terms of faith and not fear. Now, your brain won’t be able to fulfil this new role overnight. You may be asking it to undergo a radical transformation, and that takes time. But determine that with your diligence and God’s help, instead of working against you, your brain will go to work for you and become a positive force in your life. Dr Caroline Leaf, a cognitive neuroscientist, points out that the brain takes eighteen years to grow, and a lifetime to mature. Don’t miss this point! While every organ in your body was fully formed when you were born and got bigger as your body grew, your brain actually takes a full twenty-five years to grow. And once it’s fully formed, it continues to mature until the day you die. That means no matter how old you are, your brain is still growing. This is great news, because it means you don’t have to stay stuck in old or wrong thought patterns. Your brain is still maturing, which means you can still improve your thinking. As the Bible says, ‘The thoughts of the righteous are right’.

This is reproduced with kind permission from United Christian Broadcasters (UCB) Word for Today. Copies can be obtained from them at UCB Operations Centre, Westport Road, Stoke on Trent, ST6 4JF

They can be reached on 0845 6040401 or at http://www.ucb.co.uk