Thursday, April 26, 2018

Telling a new story

For if you tell others with your own mouth that Jesus Christ is your Lord and believe in your own heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in his heart that a man becomes right with God; and with his mouth he tells others of his faith, confirming his salvation. (Romans 10:9-10 TLB)

Some would say it is better to remain silent if you are not prepared to act. I would tend to agree. It is way too easy to share our thoughts and all too hard to put some actions behind those ideas and beliefs. Each time we share a thought or belief, we run the risk of rejection or dismissal, but when that idea is backed by the corresponding action it is harder to just dismiss the thought or belief. It is much harder to deny whatever has actions behind it! Those actions actually 'confirm' the validity of the thoughts. 

What we take into our hearts begins with seed thoughts that are considered and concentrated upon within our minds. We might say the gateway to our hearts is through out thoughts. I used to hear the old adage of the way to a man's heart is through his stomach, but I think otherwise! A man's heart is most deeply affected by what is within his mind and allowed to influence all manner of other thought. The heart is not the physical heart that beats in your chest, but the center of your brain where emotion is deeply connected. Thought connects to emotion and emotion often drives action.

On occasion, I watch a movie that keeps me on the edge of my seat. There is something bad about to happen - that cliff-hanger moment when you don't know if the person will survive their predicament or not. Your own emotions are heightened as you sit and watch the events unfold before you and you are not even part of the event! Why is that? You are taking in small seed thoughts of the event and then before long your heart begins to attach emotions to those thoughts. Your pulse quickens, you find yourself a little 'on edge' or 'nervous', and like it or not, there are probably a lot of 'fight or flight' hormones being released into your body as a result.

You didn't live that moment, but your mind created a perception of the moment and your heart attached the emotions to it. It is as though you were 'in the moment'. It is not always a bad thing to be in the moment, but when we dwell on the wrong stuff too long, the moments become unbearable because the emotions are overwhelming us. The constant barrage of negative emotions just wreaks havoc on our bodies. There are clear-cut instructions in scripture on how to avoid such downfalls, but none so clear as to contemplate or 'think upon' the right kind of stuff - allowing those thoughts to affect the way we begin to walk, emotions attached to those thoughts beginning to affect how it is we act or react in life.

It begins with a thought - it finishes with an action. In between, there is an attachment of emotion. If we want the right actions, we need to begin with the right thoughts. If we want a changed heart, it begins with thinking clearly and on those things important for us to 'think upon'. As a man thinks in his heart, his actions will soon follow. Beliefs are formed based upon considered 'thought' and attached emotion. We act upon beliefs and in time, those begin to affect us deeply. Think upon Christ, his grace, his perfect power at work within us, and allow the emotions of appreciation, trust, hope, and love envelop you. In rather short order, the actions of one's life begin to 'tell a new story'! Just sayin!