Brent is spending his entire vacation from work sick.
The kids are grumpy from having been sick.
It’s been raining for three days.
And I just got an email from the bank stating that I’ve gone into overdraft.
Do you see where this is going?
DUMPSVILLE, people. DUMPS. VILLE.
As providence would have it, I’ve been working on a little something behind the scenes. I don’t know if you’ve notice, but I have things to say. Believe it or not, I don’t share all of it here.
Before I blogged, I journaled. Before I had kids, I journaled. I love writing out how I’m feeling and oftentimes it helps me gain a lot of perspective. It’s also nice to be able to look back at where I’ve been and where God has brought me.
But, in the privacy of my journal, I permitted myself to express feelings and ideas that were not healthy. Ask Brent. He would see me headed off with my journal and say, “Uh oh. What did I do?” Bless his heart. My journal basically became a place for me to complain and list offenses and hardships more than anything else.
Worse still… this was merely a reflection of a heart issue. Because these feelings had to be tolerated in my heart before I allowed them to be expressed in written word.
So then there is blogging. I think of it as more of an accountable way to share and keep track of stuff. But there are still those private issues of the heart that must be dealt with.
Charlotte Mason harps a lot about habit. Thoughts form habit and habit forms nature.
It’s my nature to get discouraged easily. Because I got into the habit of getting easily discouraged. Because I thought about discouraging things.
Did you know that when you think a thought it traces a pathway through your brain? And the more you think it, the more ingrained that pathway gets. Until before you know it, you don’t have to even think it. It’s automatic.
“I can’t do this.”
“I’m such a failure.”
“My husband thinks xyz. That’s why he did such and such.”
“No one loves me the way that I deserve to be loved.”
“No one ever helps me out.”
“I’m never going to get it right.”
“My children are never going to stop whining and it’s going to drive me right into a straightjacket.”
“Our family is never going to get anywhere. We’re just going to be sucky parents raising sucky kids who marry other sucky people and continue the cycle.” (Yes, believe it or not, I have had that thought! LOL)
So what do you do with these thoughts? Sometimes it’s true: You do suck. And it’s okay to come face to face with that, but that can’t be the conclusion. You have got to wrap it up with a little bit of something that saves the day.
TRUTH. The whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
So I bought myself this cutesy little notebook. Do yourself a favor and go check out that link. Local people who love owls AND make cute stuff like journals and whatnot. I’m in heaven.
And I titled it the Truth Project. The purpose is to retrain my mind. I have to catch my thought when it is traveling that ingrained pathway and send it somewhere else. Before long, my new thought will become a new habit and thus a new nature.
Why yes, that does remind me of a scripture verse. So glad you mentioned in:
2 Corinthians 10:5… we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
I started off listing a ton of verses about truth. This was really eye opening, to list them all in one place in light of my goal.
“Lord who may abide in your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill? He who walks uprightly, and works righteousness, and speaks the truth in his heart…” Ps. 15:1-2
“Let Your lovingkindness and Your truth continually preserve me.” Ps. 40:12
“Behold you desire truth in the inward parts.” Ps. 51:6
“But You, O Lord, are a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in mercy and truth.” Ps. 86:15
“His truth shall be your shield and buckler…” Ps. 91:4
“The Lord is near to all who call upon Him…in truth.” Ps. 145:18
“Let not mercy and truth forsake you; Bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.” Prov. 3:3
“Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth.” Eph. 6:14
“And you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.” Jn. 8:32
- gives us access to the tabernacle of the most high God
- preserves us
- is desired by God, in our most inward parts
- is an attribute of God
- protects us
- brings us near to God
- strengthens us
- sets us free
And yet we forsake it continually, don’t we? We allow these thoughts to perpetuate in our minds. Especially as mothers… we beat ourselves down all day long!
So, on days like today, when I really feel like everything is an uphill battle, and NO, I CAN’T DO IT, nor do I have any desire to do it, and I really want to throw in the towel, and…
What is the truth?
The truth is that we’re all sick and grumpy, but this is a very small challenge in the grand scheme of things!
The truth is that Brent has all this time off from work and I’m just thankful to have him here, for better or for worse, in sickness and in health.
The truth is that each day our very small children grow just a little bit in some small area. Bedtime won’t always be chaotic.
The truth is that this is the day that the Lord has made, and I WILL rejoice and be glad in it. I will NOT complain, I will not despair.
The truth is that it’s hard, but God shores me up with new mercies every morning and fresh grace for each moment.
You have to lead your heart. Jeremiah 17:9 says
“The heart is deceitful above all things
and beyond cure.
Who can understand it?”
You cannot follow your heart. It will tell you that you are not good enough, that you can’t do it, that you’re going to fail.
You have to lead your heart to the truth. And the truth is found in God’s Word.
So, sometimes I have to get hardcore and the only truth I’m going to be able to record is just scripture, verbatim.
Friends, stop thinking unproductive unhealthy thoughts.
Find the truth. Search it out.
And keep telling yourself that.