“The aphorism, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he,” not only embraces the whole of a man’s being, but is so comprehensive as to reach out to every condition and circumstance of his life. A man is literally what he thinks, his character being the complete sum of all his thoughts.”
-James Allen, As A Man Thinketh
As I said the other day, I struggle with depression. It’s a topic that I’ve read a lot about and I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about. I have tried hard to keep it from getting the best of my life. But no matter what I do, it keeps resurfacing.
So the other day, as soon as I felt it creeping back in, I confronted it head-on. I remembered what a huge difference it made for me last time when I finally admitted to my friends that I was struggling. I felt a weight lift off my shoulders, and just felt this shift in my mindset – like I was no longer a passive victim, but a fighter, and it had to go! Shortly after that time, I was feeling much better.
Anyway, I’ve been pondering a lot over the past couple of days. Why do I get depressed? Is this something God has allowed in my life as a lesson to learn? Is it an attack? Is it physical, spiritual, or both? Am I going to struggle with this for the rest of my life?
And as I’ve been thinking, praying, and meditating on Scripture these past few days, I’ve felt HaShem impress upon me some important truths. I want to share them with you, and my hope is that someday my openness will be a blessing to someone else struggling with this ugly beast. I don’t have all the answers, but I will share with you what I have!
God is bigger. No matter what I’m facing, He is so much bigger than all of it!
This morning I read the last several chapters of the book of Job. It is HaShem’s answer to Job after everything he has been through. Very powerful words, very moving. If you haven’t read it recently, do it!
God knows. He sees everything. He knows my heart. He knows my thought processes.
“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, …discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” -Hebrews 4:12
God’s love never fails. It never gives up. He knows all of this, and yet His love doesn’t give up or even waver in the slightest.
“For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever.” -Psalm 100:5
God created my mind to have a strong influence over the rest of me. My mind is of utmost importance, and I cannot ignore it.
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…” -Romans 12:2a
God tells me what to focus my mind on, and His plan for me is abundant life.
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” -Philippians 4:8
God does not force His will on me – I must choose it daily.
“Choose this day whom you will serve.” -Joshua 24:15
Finally, to close I want to add one more thing. It is important to remember that I can go through all the right motions but not truly let Him speak to and change me. This does more harm than good, tricking myself into thinking I’m doing well, but setting myself up for failure! This is why I believe there is so much power in admitting my challenges. I must be real with myself.
So today, I am choosing to renew my mind with the truth of God’s word. I will set my mind on Him, and walk in faith.
“If then, you have been raised with Messiah, seek the things that are above, where Messiah is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.” -Colossians 3:1-2
P.S. If you enjoyed the quote at the top, you can download the entire short book for free off the website, asamanthinketh.net. It’s a good read!