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Joyful Intentionality

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Before We Choose an Action, We Have Already Chosen a Thought.

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There is a reason why the Father tells us to take our thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). Because every action has a starting place. Every strong emotion has a beginning.

All transformation originates in renewed thinking (Romans 12:2). How we think about ourselves dominates our behavior (Proverbs 23:7) and sets our agenda in life towards other people.

Simply put, how we think about ourselves sets the attitude in which we approach life.

An attitude is simply a posture that we adopt or a position we take that expresses some thought or feeling. It becomes a habit and shows up constantly in our behavior. It is a habitual mode of thought.

Every day we wake up with an attitude. It’s a mindset that either works for or against us. Differing situations provoke a behavioral response that is positive or negative. Certain people bring out particular responses that govern our behavior towards them. These attitudes are rooted in perceptions and emotions that are entrenched in a thought.

The mind is the seedbed for all that we do and say.

Negative thoughts are confirmed by unenthusiastic emotions. Positive thoughts cheerfully validate everyone and everything.

Jesus has set us free to learn how to become like Him.

“Let this mind (i.e., have this attitude) be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus, who although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped. He emptied made himself nothing, taking the form of a bondservant. Being found in the likeness as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” (Philippians 2:5–8)

The thinking of Jesus shaped His personality as a man. It changed his persona as a bondslave, his ministry towards humanity and his humility and obedience towards his Father.

He took on new mindsets, attitudes and approaches to life so that he could fulfill the purpose of His Father. All these were deliberate thoughts and actions on His part.

He thought it through! He changed His thinking to accommodate the life that was required of Him. He was not double-minded and therefore unstable ( James 1:8) in His thinking, emotions and behavior.

The reason that we are in our current position is always our thinking.

Our thinking brought us here; and it must therefore take us out and onward. If our thinking has brought us to a place that we don’t like, then surely it is time for a better thought!

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P.S. Think of a situation that is causing stress in your life. What is the basis of your thinking and attitude about it? What would a better thought and attitude look like to you?

P.P.S. Want more on this? Be sure to get “The Art of Thinking Brilliantly.