The Bible is full of truth about the importance of controlling our minds. In this sermon, Dr. Stanley shares Biblical truth found in Colossians 3 about how our tendencies to think as unbelievers change when we become believers. Christ gives us renewed thoughts and the Bible to guide us towards thinking like Christ—godly and positive thoughts.
What we think not only directs what we do but also determines who we are (Prov. 23:7). Our thoughts affect our perception of other people, God, our situations, and ourselves. They determine the direction of our lives, the quality of our relationships, and even our accomplishments or failures. Although we can’t control people or all our circumstances, we can choose what to think about them, which in turn directs how we respond. With so much at stake, it’s important that we guard what comes into our minds because everything we see, hear, and feel programs our thoughts. Our goal as believers is to understand God’s Word so His thoughts can fill our minds, enabling us to live in a fashion that is pleasing and honoring to Him.
Colossians 3:1-8 advises us to set our minds on things above and remember that through salvation, we have died to our old way of life. When Jesus comes into our lives, He changes us. We can’t simply add Him to our former lifestyle and keep living as we did in the past. It’s time to put away the things that no longer fit our new identity in Christ—and this includes our old thought patterns.
The pathway to controlling our thoughts begins with an understanding of our relationship to Jesus Christ. When we were saved, a change took place—we were “raised up with Christ” (Col. 3:1). We now have a new position in Him, and God desires that we also have a new way of thinking and responding to situations and people in our lives. Past experiences and feelings can produce inaccurate thoughts about ourselves. For instance, we could think we’re ugly, when in reality we’re beautiful. Although these faulty perceptions may start very early in life, God wants to give us a new way of thinking which is based on reality.