by Peter G. Feenstra
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. Philippians 4:8
The apostle Paul, as a servant of Jesus Christ, commands us to think about things that are true, honourable, right and pure. He is telling us to occupy our minds with good things. Paul calls us to stand firm in the Lord (4:1), to be of the same mind in the Lord (4:2), and to rejoice in the Lord (4:4). To do such things we need to develop good thinking habits. Our thought patterns are derailed when our minds are not on the Lord. When our minds are preoccupied and flooded with worry and anxiety, our thinking will become negative.
The Lord created us with the capacity to think. The ability to think differentiates us from all other creatures. In Paradise God expected Adam and Eve to use their ability to think in order to distinguish between good and evil. The Lord created a woman to be Adam’s wife, and since the first man was given a brain to think, he immediately recognized what the Lord had done for him. Adam’s ability to think resulted in the composition of the first love song (Gen 2:23).
God created us as rational and intellectual beings, and we should behave as such. “Do not be like the horse or like the mule, which have no understanding,” David says in Psalm 32:9. What David is saying is this: “Use the mind the Lord has given you and think before you act or speak.” The Lord has given us the gift of thinking so that we can communicate with Him and with one another.
We live in one of the most anti-intellectual periods in the history of the world. We have more information at our fingertips than ever before, but many do not take the time to think things through. As children of God we should not be satisfied with giving little thought to what matters. If we are to have a passion for Christ and His service we need to think. Challenge yourself and your children to use your God-given minds (brains) to read the Scriptures and other good material that will make you rejoice in the Lord and give praise to His name. The Spirit needs to transform our thinking by the renewal of our minds. May we train ourselves to think on those things that are edifying. Reflecting on what we have in Christ will always make for good thinking!For further information about this resource, click here.