The Thoughts of the Heart
Our thoughts are what determine our success. It is our thoughts which determine our behaviors, but more than that, it is our thoughts which determine how we feel, and our values.
Beyond the natural, it is also in the realm of our thoughts in which our faith is founded. We have faith in God’s Word. Faith in His promise to heal. And, it is in keeping the realm of our thoughts rooted and grounded in God’s Word that we are able to keep our hearts from doubting what He has told us. So important are our thoughts that they are, indeed, the realm of our salvation, as it is written, if we confess with our mouth and believe in our hearts that God has raised Him from the dead, we will be saved (Romanbs 10:9). Our thoughts are what make our lives.
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
2 Corinthians 10:3-5
In Noah’s day, the corruption of the Earth had reached the point where every thought and intent of the heart was only evil continually. All evil, all the time, in every thought. That was why God judged the Earth. The realm of the Spirit also works on thoughts. A spontaneous thought is the voice of the spirit realm, and it is up to the Christian to discern that voice, to know whether it is of God.
Whether we stand or fall depends upon how we think. When we encounter the trials that must come into our lives, whether we receive them with fear, with doubts, or with faith. It is our thoughts, in ever corner of our heart, that make the difference.
If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light.
Whether one wants to use the language of the ‘unconscious’, or another way of understanding such as the “thoughts and intents” of the heart as Genesis 3:6 and Hebrews 4:12 use, it is that “deeper” thing, that thing we must “dig deep” (Luke 6:48) to, that we must address. It is not just the thoughts of our mind, but the thoughts of the heart, and the intent behind those thoughts, that God’s Word is able to penetrate, unravel, and reveal.
If our whole destiny can hinge upon just the thought in our heart that Jesus is who He says He is, then so too can a prayer, a promise, a healing, or a destiny. We must be in control of our thoughts, taking them captive to the Word of God, and aligning them with Him.
And, possibly most importantly, we must be focused. When our focus leaves what God has for us to be doing, we can be thinking all the right thoughts, but be unable to muster the emotional capacities to perform them. But, when our focus is on the one thing that is most important, then and sometimes only then, do we have the resources to do what He is calling us to do (Luke 14:33).
The thoughts of peace lead to a peace-filled life. The thoughts of love lead us into love. But, even as even the world notices, when the mind is notices problems, errors in others, and faults, those are often the very difficulties reflected in those who notice them. Paul also pointed this out in Romans, where he said to those who preached not to steal, do they steal? Romans 2:22.
It is thoughts that are the barometer for the believer, and by them, we can tell the condition of our soul. When Jesus pointed to anger, adultery, anxiety and the like in Matthew 5-7, it was because when there is something wrong on the inside, it comes to the outside in one of those ways.
Consider for a moment, Jesus’ words,
But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me.
You see, if you think about this in reverse, it speaks something profound about our thoughts. When one considers that frame of mind one must be in, in which they are within and controlled by the Holy Spirit so that they can be used, they are that far removed from speaking evil thoughts.
In my intellectualism, I may, if I choose, imagine that I should be in such a state where it would be possible to speak something against Him (but I choose not to). Yet, in one manner of speaking, Jesus is saying that the place in His Spirit in which one can be of use in the miraculous is separate and distinct from whatever place of intellectualism that may be, so that, straightway after performing a work, no one’s thoughts could go there.
This, at least to me, speaks profound volumes of the place in my own self that I must be if I am to be used of God. It also speaks something of that place of ‘intellectualism’, and what place it should have in my life on a day-to-day basis–absolutely none. That’s right, if I want to be in the best place with Him, I do not want anything of what is otherwise. The greatest in the Kingdom is the one like a little child, and, as Christ said in Luke 14:26, if I can be a better disciple by hating even my own self, whatever part is of my lower, earthly nature, so that I might, in some way, obtain more of His highest, perfect, and blessed way for my life.
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. Nevertheless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing.