Have you ever tried not to think of something? Our minds are amazing, but they are also one of the hardest things to control, making them a prime target for spiritual warfare.
So how do we train our brain for goodness?
One way is to study the tactics of the enemy so we recognize and avoid his traps. A snare the enemy often plants is that of a wrong focus. It’s spiritual warfare at its best. We see this tactic in Genesis 3. By asking Eve about all the trees in the garden, Satan narrows her focus to just one.
The one she can’t have.
She promptly forgets about the multitude of trees she has complete freedom to enjoy—and zeroes in on the one to which God said no. The very fact God’s forbidden it makes her want it more. Sure enough, she takes the fruit.
I’m not so different.
You know those personality tests? I come up a strong choleric melancholy. I see the glass half empty, not half full. My nature has a laser focus for the negative. I have to be very intentional to maintain a positive focus. It takes work.
Years ago, my son had a football game in my hometown. We have family there, and several relatives planned to watch the game.
I don’t get angry often, but I was furious. I won’t name names, but this wasn’t a distant relative. As I prayed through my anger the next day, God gently reminded me of the friends and family who had come and supported him. God peeled the negativity from my eyes and allowed me to see the blessing.
Today when I sense a wrong focus worming its way into my thoughts, and especially my relationships, I choose to focus on the positive that is there.
Even the small stuff. Everything counts.
Because a focus on what I don’t have makes me an unhappy person. An ungracious, demanding person. One that feels like I’m missing out.
Reminding myself daily of the good that surrounds me keeps my anger and frustration in check, improves my mood, and cultivates a generous and grateful spirit.
All good things.
All like my Father.
So, shift your focus from what you haven’t to what you have. You’ll be surprised at the abundance around you.
Are you a half full or half empty person?
Has the enemy snared you with the trap of what you haven’t?
How can you change your focus?
A snare the enemy often plants is that of a wrong focus. Click to tweet.
By asking Eve about all the trees, Satan narrows her focus to just one. Click to tweet.
A focus on what I don’t have makes me feel like I’m missing out. That’s Satan’s goal. Click to tweet.
Shift your focus from what you haven’t to what you have. The abundance will surprise you. Click to tweet.