Our Bible verse for today: “You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.” Isaiah 26:3 (NKJV)
Our thought for today: “Don’t allow yourself to dwell in despair.”
The concept of “mind control” sounds spooky to many people. It conjures up images of a diabolical genius who can control other people’s thoughts; or someone who dabbles in the dark side of the spiritual world and has learned to bend spoons with his thoughts.
But actually “mind control” is much simpler and innocent than that. Mind control simply means having control over your thoughts. It means taking positive control over the influences you allow into your mind and the thoughts you allow your mind to dwell on.
This is a bigger issue than you might realize. The things you allow your mind to dwell on determines how you think and what you believe to be true, and it also colors your personality – thereby determining how other people view you.
When it comes to our theme of “Laugh Again”, what you allow your mind to dwell on will determine if you are happy or sad, upbeat or depressed. If you allow your mind to dwell on negative thoughts and depressing situations, you will be negative and depressed. But if you make yourself focus instead on positive and upbeat things like encouraging bible verses, or humorous thoughts and jokes, you will be positive, upbeat, and maybe even funny.
“Mind control” is what Isaiah was referring to in Isaiah 26:3. Those who choose to keep their minds focused on God and on the things of God will find themselves to be at peace. You can accomplish that by memorizing and reciting encouraging passages of Scripture. You can do it by means of listening to uplifting Christian music. And yes, it can happen through comedy and laughing, and surrounding yourself with Christian friends who encourage you and lift you up.
All of us have times when we feel down, but we don’t have to dwell there. We don’t have to remain depressed and discouraged. We can be intentional about taking actions that will move us up out of despair. There’s a general principle about human behavior that applies here. It says, “All of my problems become smaller when I take action to deal with them.” That applies to problems of all kinds but especially to despair, discouragement, and depression. It all begins to dissipate when we take positive and intentional action to deal with it. You don’t have to stay there. You can control your mind.
And also, if you know someone who is struggling with this issue, please be sure your help is actually helpful. Don’t be like that church that started a support group for them but then put in the bulletin, “The Low Self-Esteem support group will meet on Thursday at 7:00 PM in the church basement. Please use the back door.”