How We Think….

“Enough!” A word expressing a posture of satisfaction, contentment and peace? Or an exclamation expressing exasperation and wanting something about current circumstances to end? In which place do you find yourself today?Yesterday I was talking to a friend about a couple of other words which, depending upon their context can have opposite meanings or implications. One was “boldness”. In a biblical word study I discovered that in some contexts “boldness” implies arrogance, defiance, brashness, pridefulness, and a host of negative connotations. However, once the Apostles experienced Pentecost, their “boldness” on behalf of the Gospel and the arising church became strength, perseverance, authority, and obedience.

Similarly, “stronghold” in the context of the bondage of sin becomes something against which one struggles and may experience repeated defeat. But in the context of God’s loving protective presence, it becomes a refuge, a citadel of safety, and a secure fortress.
We can choose where we live between these diametrically opposed postures. Choose your context with care.

Sometimes the most important thing I as a counselor can do is help someone see that there can be more than one context in which a thought or belief can be couched. Helping one change or reframe a belief from a posture of defeat to a posture of victory can happen in a moment, “turning on a dime” as it were, or it can take months and months and many examples of how others have accomplished similar transformations. And, at times, I and others within our ministry do the plowing and sowing and watering and praying and, in an instant, the individual suddenly has a breakthrough epiphany that arises out of something totally separate from the ministry we have sown or simply arising out of the depth of the Spirit’s work in her soul in God’s time and using some experience of the individual that was totally unknown to us. God loves doing things differently, uniquely in each life and surprising us with His creativity and unexpected extraordinary presence in ordinary circumstances. I love that God has invited me to watch and be a small part of His work in the lives of people!

“Meta cognition”. Thinking about HOW we think about that which we think about. ( not just WHAT we think.). When one is so entrenched in only one way of thinking and cannot be helped to examine her thinking more objectively from multiple perspectives she remains stuck in patterns of thought that lead to being stuck in feelings and behaviors that arise from that intractable mindset.