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April 2018

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THOUGHTS AND WORDS
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In this journey called “life” there are seasons of success, happiness and blessings. There are also seasons of disappointment, sorrow and loss. It’s in those trying seasons that we should take inventory of where we are spiritually. We should ask the Lord to reveal areas where growth is needed and show us how to pass essential tests in order to reap the next harvest.

How do we grow in challenging seasons? Our mindset determines how we perceive circumstances and how we respond. The apostle Paul said, “[Cast] down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and [bring] into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5.) Evil imaginations take root in thought patterns, if we don’t cast them down immediately. How do we cast them down? Scripture instructs us to evict sensationalism and fake images and to bring our thoughts into alignment with Christ’s thinking. Vain or imaginary thoughts hide truth and stunt our spiritual growth with unnecessary misery and unrealistic expectations. God expects us to remain conscious of His Word.

We know, “. . . whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it . . . .” (Ecclesiastes 3:14.) Unfortunately, the adversary and/or our flesh consistently attempts to sow seeds of doubt, resistance or procrastination to keep us from thinking about God’s promises. Our great destinies can’t be stopped, but wrong thinking can destroy our peace and attack the hope that seeks opportunities. It’s our responsibility to take authority by opposing and speaking against negative thoughts. Philippians 4:8, encourages us to think on whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely and admirable. If we find anything of excellence and praiseworthy, we are to think on those things.

When our thoughts are regulated, we can speak abundant blessings over ourselves and others. Whatever comes out of our mouths comes from our thoughts. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” (Proverbs 18:21.) Positive thoughts prompt us to speak life, and not destruction or death. Even in the midst of chaos we can speak life. Speaking life doesn’t mean that we’re in denial about circumstances, it only means that we’ve chosen to add a comma versus a period at the end of a challenging time. We should never accept defeat as final, instead we should have hearts of anticipation that we will reach God’s expected end of our trials. Whether the struggle is physical, financial, emotional or spiritual, maintaining a sound mind and speaking life leads to healing and prosperity.

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Monica L. Courtney is a servant of God who hopes to master moving in God’s love. She is always working toward bettering herself and her spiritual walk. Her goal is to inspire both God’s children as well as the secular world, through her personal transformation and God’s illumination. She is privileged to sit under the teachings of Pastor Steven A. Bailey at Olivet Missionary Baptist Church (San Francisco, CA) and has received great wisdom, knowledge and understanding from other anointed ministries.