Every morning, they greet me; pinned on my “Inspiration Board”! I am not sure exactly where I first read them; somewhere Ann Voskamp wrote something. I knew I didn’t want to forget them! They hit my heart hard.
In Proverbs 23:7, I find similar words:
“As he thinks in his heart, so he is….”
Proverbs rings true, our heart prompts our actions. Watch a person’s actions and you will see what they believe and who they are. What a person says is not always exhibited in their actions. I used to tell my children, “Don’t listen to what people say, watch what they do, then you’ll know who they really are.”
Ann’s words expand that thought, “What your mind thinks becomes the house your heart lives in”…. Your brain thinks thoughts and builds the framework around your heart. The thoughts you let play, replay, and stay in your mind, will make their way to your heart, and you will act on them! The brain controls the body, physiology 101, hearts don’t beat without brains.
Go with me on this analogy.
What kind of house does your heart live in?
Are you selective about the construction and decor of your heart’s home? Not using any old paint color, couch, rug, end table, etc., but checking if they complement your aesthetic (your beliefs)? Do you have beliefs that serve as your standard for accepting new thoughts into the house? Do you randomly pick and chose “decor” to suit popular trends? Do you imprint/keep good pieces (thoughts) to enhance your environment, deleting unacceptable ones? Do you hoard everyone’s thoughts/opinions and try to cram them in?
There are lots of different houses to build. Remember the three little pigs? All houses are not safe to live in. Perhaps, somewhere along the way, thoughts absorbed and weren’t discarded, and have become the “house” you act and react from.
Where Do You Nestle Your Heart?
Some thoughts are destructive; stealing your heart of any self-worth and stifling its potential. Some thoughts are under-mining; sound good at first, but the longer they stay, the result is confusion and ambivalence. Some thoughts are life-giving; building the heart up with love, forgiveness, kindness, goodness, peace, etc.
What kind of person do you want to be? The words you think will determine it!
Please understand, I am not talking about the “power of positive thinking”. I am talking about taking “thoughts captive”, any thought you find crossing your mind. Holding it up against your beliefs: deciding if it is healthy/true or is it damaging/untrue. Then choosing to, keep it in your “house”, or throw it out.
Amazing News….. your heart can have a new home!
It takes work and self-awareness, but like renovating an old house, it’s doable. Make a new floor plan (determine what thoughts you’ll accept). Take a sledgehammer to some walls. Clean out closets and corners. Make a few trips to the dump: out with the old harmful thoughts, welcome in the new healthy thoughts. It’s worth the purging for heart-healthy living space.
Watch and safeguard against thoughts you don’t want your heart living in. Throw them out, reject them, at first hearing. I tell myself, “Those words contradict my beliefs, I’m not listening to them.” “They are not kind, loving…. I don’t want to be that person. Out the door they go.” Refuse to let them stay.
Sometimes, I ponder words, seek counsel, or compare them to scripture. If after those things, they ring true, they can stay. But, if they are twisted, skewed, or untrue, I kick them out and shut the front door!
Re-Train Your Thought Life.
I believe, humans are sinful and live in a sinful world. Learning to capture thoughts and keep your mind free of trash is a challenge for all of us.
Some among us have suffered “thought assault”: someone or thing (media, movies, TV, etc.) has planted terrible things in your mind. You live out of hurting places; I can’t imagine. You do not have to believe what you’ve been told. Put your foot down and refuse to live with those “broken dumpy” thoughts a minute longer. Ask for help to clean them out. Some untruths are buried so deep, you might need to rent a jack hammer and put in some sweat equity. (Sledgehammer being a trusted counselor.) It will be worth it. Please, don’t think you can’t change. Please, don’t let someone or something rob your heart by accepting and believing untrue words.
Fill Up the Dumpster
We all need to send some thoughts packing. They, may be from childhood, teen years, college, or any decade after, but damaging words stuck, surface frequently, making you think untrue things.
Sometimes, rejecting “words” … looks like a strong-willed-fist-clenched child stomping one foot and screaming, “NO”!
Do it! Get out the broom. Swat them out the door. Those nagging untruths have got to go! Don’t let them live in your house another day. Refuse their presence.
Your heart is worth it! You are worth it!
Does your heart live in;
An Open Pavilion – open to all winds, climate changes
A Camping Tent – flimsy temporary structure
A Straw Hut – storms can blow it away
A Mansion – sturdy and strong, weather resistant
Your mansion awaits!
Destination: Beverly Hills,
Feel free to share with a friend(s).
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