Cluttered thinking leads to wasted time and anxiety. So how do you organize your thoughts?
Running around makes you worry
When you chase after the worries of the world, you dedicate attention to things of little value. How much time do you waste looking things that don’t enrich your life? Before the Internet and smartphones it was just television, but the same source is behind it all.
The modern world tries to tell us that Satan does not exist. Still, we see exaggerated forms of evil every day in the news. Some people may even suffer from demonic possession. Where does this come from? In some ways, clear thought depends on knowing that the devil exists, and he does all he can to distract us. In the Bible we see how he tempted humans from the very beginning. Even Jesus was tempted. Understanding that temptation is largely external helps us to resist confusion.
When you get confused, stop for a moment and say, “The enemy is at work here. He is trying to distract me. He’s tempting me to believe that there is no way to see things clearly.” This doesn’t mean a demon is lurking around trying to control you. But if something takes away your peace, what might be the source?
Some say it’s natural, but animals don’t suffer from this problem. Have you ever seen a pet dog anxious about if their owner is going to feed them tomorrow? Wild animals have to find or kill their meal everyday – do we see squirrels frozen with worry? Satan prefers to work unnoticed by us. He wants us to think he doesn’t exist. He convinces us that our problems are just a part of us.
Nobody’s life is perfect
Everybody has trials and tribulations, but worry only exaggerates them. Our brains go around and around causing us to waste energy. We lose our way and focus on worry instead of solutions. Even if there is no immediate solution, there is a way to have peace.
Do you believe?
Prayer is more than just asking for help. In many ways, prayer organizes your thoughts. When you stop to pray, things fall into perspective. First of all, you get a chance to think about what you have to do. You are reminded of important tasks. It might be something like “pay the heating bill,” or something much more important like “call your mom.”
Besides putting day-to-day order in your life, you also receive a heavenly order. In prayer, you remember who Jesus is and what he did for you. You might understand this with your head, but in prayer it sinks deep into your heart. Your focus shifts away from temptations, and you are nourished by eternal truths such as mercy, forgiveness, and love. It becomes easier to see what really matters. The clutter falls away, and you see with a clear eye.
Time spent in prayer even reveals “hidden” secrets. You see things for how they really are without complications. A situation unfolds before you in the light of God’s truth, and suddenly you’re not confused anymore.
Practice makes perfect
This kind of thinking doesn’t happen overnight or with just one prayer. You have to work on it. But as Paul explained, this practice gives us a peace that “transcends all understanding.” You rise above the worries and distractions of the world. In Christ’s resurrection you know the tempter has no power over you. You rise again with your triumphant Savior. You are free to think clearly.
Meditate on Paul’s words: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6).
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