What do you spend your time thinking about? Everybody thinks about something and it’s usually all the time. Your brain is constantly moving, constantly thinking, always working, never stopping. Granted, there are times when your brains takes over and starts thinking for you, but when you are awake and have the choice about what to think, what do you choose to think about?
For me, I’m usually trying to remember and plan my day at work. And if it’s not that, then I’m brainstorming plot lines or skits. Or, I could be thinking about a book I’ve read or a movie I’ve seen. Or I could be thinking about what I’m going to cook for dinner.
How many of you know people who think negatively all the time? They’re so sad and grouchy all the time that it seems there isn’t a positive bone in their body? All they think about is how unfair life is or how they’ve been mistreated or how people around them have been mistreated or how they don’t have any friends. Those are the people you avoid at work and at church and at family reunions, right?
Negative thinking is a vicious cycle. And it’s silly. Because what do we have to be negative about anyway? I mean, those negative thinkers can always find something to complain about, but in the grand scheme of things, how can we complain about anything?
The verse for the day made me think of all this.
8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.
A lot of people call this the “filter verse” and say it should be used to determine what you watch on television or at the movie theatre or what you read, and I’m sure that’s a perfectly good use for this verse. But a lot of times people don’t apply it to their own personal unending mental conversation.
Fix your thoughts on what is true.
What is true? God loves you. That’s true. In the face of something like that, how can we complain about the weather?
Think about things that are exellent and worthy of praise. That doesn’t sound negative to me.
But it’s so much easier to be negative. It’s easier to focus on the downside of life. Honestly, life does have a lot of downs, but it also has a lot of ups. If you choose to focus on the ups and truly believe that God knows what He’s doing, you’ll find your outlook on life turning a bit sunnier. And as soon as you have some sun shining, it’s not long until everything else starts to brighten up too.
I remember a cartoon show when I was young called Rainbow Brite. I adored that show. I actually have the movie they made. It’s total 80’s awesomeness. Rainbow Brite is the main character and she brings light and color to the world; she’s this genuinely happy little girl who laughs a lot (I know; I think the creators were on crack). The main antagonists (read that bad guys) of the show are these two creepy guys who live in a cave; one is really stupid and the other one is a really stupid schemer. Their names are Murky and Lurky Dismal, and they don’t like color or rainbows or happiness or anything cheerful. That’s basically the show.
Not a lot of redeeming qualities other than demonstrating to kids that being grouchy and sad isn’t a good way to make friends. Well . . . maybe it had redeeming qualities after all then.
We can choose what we think about. Even in countries where we can speak our minds out loud, our minds can still work in silence. So I say it’s better to think positively. God has everything under control, so why be a Gloomy Gus (or a Murky Dismal)?