“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.”
Proverbs 23:7a (NKJV)
Are you at peace? Do you have joy? Your emotions will follow your focus. Do you want to change your emotions and the way you are experiencing life? Then you will have to start by changing your focus (Isaiah 26:3-4). If you want to control your emotions – and not be controlled by them – then you need to control your focus. What you think about and focus on will determine the course of your life and how you live. Your life will follow your focus. The Bible shows us that “as a man thinks in his heart, so is he”. The way you think (your focus) will determine the way you live. If you want to change your life, change the way you think.
Jesus said that we would have trouble in this life (John 16:33). You cannot control everything that happens to you – but you can control how you respond to it, and that will help to determine the outcome. When circumstances are rough and tough and things look bleak, when you stay focused on God and His Word you will help to set your course towards a favourable outcome. If you want the outcome to be good, then you need to have the right focus.
Success doesn’t happen by accident – it’s got a lot to do with your focus. Negative circumstances and experiences will come, but there are always two ways to look at things. You can be pessimistic and expect the worst, or you can be optimistic and expect the best. The world’s kind of ‘optimism’ isn’t rooted in anything and so there is no foundation for it – that is why mere “positive thinking” is empty. But as believers we always have a reason to hope. Our optimism is rooted in the unshakable and unchanging Word of God who said that He is for us, not against us (Romans 8:31), and will never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). Because we are never without Christ, we are never without hope. No matter how bad things may seem and feel, you need to remember that nothing is impossible with God (Matthew 19:26; Luke 1:37). Circumstances are always subject to change and what man says is subject to change, but what God says is not subject to change. No matter what challenges come your way, stay focused on God and His Word and His love for you, and don’t allow yourself to be consumed with your challenges and difficulties.
“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me…”
Psalm 23:4 (NKJV)
When you’re walking through “the valley of the shadow of death”, you can allow yourself to be freaked out, full of fear, panic and worry – or you can choose to remember and focus on the truth that God is with you, and therefore you do not have to experience any negative emotions (fear, panic, anxiety etc.). It’s your choice.
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith…”
Hebrews 12:1-2 (NKJV)
God has a destiny for your life (Jeremiah 29:11) which is not going to be fulfilled by accident. If you want to run the race of life successfully you will need to be focused on Him and get rid of distractions. The Christian life is not about focusing on sin and dealing with it; it’s about a relationship with Jesus and focusing on Him. The more you focus on Jesus, His love for you and what He has done for you, the more you good fruit you will experience in your life and you’ll run your race more effectively.
Thought to focus on for the day:
Fill your heart and mind with God’s Word and His promises. Stay focused on Jesus and your relationship with Him. His grace, love, comfort and goodness is enough for you. When negative things happen, look at them through God’s Word and choose to be optimistic and focus on the hope that you have because God is with you and He loves you.
Scriptures to meditate on:
Isaiah 43:1-5; Romans 8:28-39; Philippians 4:4-8.
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