The principles in this blog are derived from the Keys To Freedom study, an 8-week discipleship study based on the curriculum used for the past 36 years in our residential program.  

Have you ever believed that you’re at the mercy of your own thought life? That you’re merely subject to whatever berates you day and night, and there’s no way out? I know that feeling quite well. Let me tell you; it’s no way to live. Just when you think you’ve regained your balance, an onslaught of negative, self-deprecating thoughts come rushing back in, and the cycle continues.

This cycle has been my story for a long time, as well. I mean, I know we’re called to think about things that are good and lovely and true (Phil 4:8), but the more I would sit and try to usher the good thoughts in and the bad ones out, the more exhausted I became. Somewhere along the way, I failed to realize that renewing my mind was an active, involved process together with the work of the Holy Spirit. Simply “thinking happy thoughts” could not change my thought life.

Maybe you’ve experienced similar frustration, and switching your thoughts from darkness to light seems impossible. I’m learning that Jesus calls us to abundant life. We do not have to feel helpless and hopeless in life. God’s desire for us always involves greater freedom. After all, the Word says, “It is for FREEDOM that Christ has set us free.” (Galatians 5:1)

So, what does this concept look like in our everyday lives? How can we practically renew our thought life, rather than feeling like we’re subject to it?

As I’m learning more in my own journey, I’m shocked that I never once considered that the underlying lies I believed about myself were related to my daily thoughts. The truth is our fundamental beliefs about ourselves and God determine what our thought life is. The Keys to Freedom study has been so instrumental in this area of my life. This study has helped me to identify belief systems and get to the root of the problem.

The Bible is clear that out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks (Luke 6:45). Whatever is in our hearts is usually what we’ve given time and attention to.

What are you constantly thinking about, obsessing over, and even imagining to be true? Ask the Lord to show you where those thoughts originated. What circumstances, wounds, disappointments, or even rejections led to the agreement of what you’re believing these days?

This process may not be instantaneous, but give the Lord time to reveal those spaces in your heart He wants to heal. He is faithful to do so! As He continues to reveal those places, ask Him to bring His truth to directly to combat the lies you’ve believed. If you want to renew your thought life, you must replace the lies you believe with God’s truth!

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