Escaping Unhealthy Thought Patterns

April 5, 2024

If you struggle with depressive thoughts or unhealthy thought patterns in general, the Bible has something to say about that. 

But, really quick, I will address depressive thoughts. I don't want you to hear that the only solution to mental health struggles is scripture. God gives us many tools to address feelings of depression or depressive thoughts. Sometimes there’s a chemical way. This would be medication, and in some cases, a very necessary route toward healing. I didn’t want to hop into today’s blog post without mentioning this. 

There are other ways to build healthier thought patterns. Sometimes there’s an emotional way. Often times the emotional route can be addressed through therapy. At SCC, we are big fans of finding a good counselor to help navigate tough seasons in life. Sometimes there’s a relational way. And sometimes there’s a spiritual way. 

BUT, In every case, we can use God’s Word to help transform our minds. Let’s continue…

In Romans 8:5-6, Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace” (NIV).

Do your thoughts control you? Are you governed by your feelings and thoughts? Or are you governed by the Holy Spirit? There is FREEDOM from your controlling thoughts when you allow the Holy Spirit to transform your mind. 

Romans 12:2 says, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

Ask the Holy Spirit to replace the self-destructive thoughts with his own. When you’ve got something negative in your life, don’t resist it. Replace it.

If you turn on the TV, and there’s something on that you don’t want to watch or you shouldn’t watch, you can’t just sit there and tell yourself you shouldn’t be watching it. You have to change the channel. You replace it—immediately.

You choose what you dwell on. Ask the Holy Spirit to give you the thoughts you need to focus on. He’ll do it! He will change your perspective. And that will change your life.

Here’s what scripture tells us to replace unhealthy thoughts with instead. Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

What you dwell on is a CHOICE. A fleeting thought is just a fleeting thought. You have to choose what you will dwell on. You have to replace the unhealthy thoughts with things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely and admirable. 

One of the best ways to replace unhealthy thoughts is with scripture, because scripture is always true. 

Instead of worrying, or dwelling on depressive thoughts, I encourage you to actively and intentionally replace those thoughts with scripture. If you are dedicated to scripture memorization, you will soon find that replacing depressive thoughts with scripture becomes easier and easier, and almost second nature. 

God has promised many wonderful benefits in your life if you will meditate on the Word of God and then do it. You’ll hear it, you study it, then memorize it.

Psalm 119:11 “I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.”

You meditate on it, you really think about it.  

Philippians 2:16 “Hold firmly to the Word of Life.”  

You’ve got to hold tightly, you’ve got to get a good grip on it.  

Psalm 119:35 “Make me walk along the path of your commands, for that is where my happiness is found.”  

Usually we’re looking for happiness in all the wrong places. God says happiness is found in the path of God’s commands.

When the lies of the enemy flood in… “you’re worthless, you’re alone, you should be ashamed,” that’s when you need the truth of God’s Word running through your mind. 

That’s when you need to remember: 

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 

Psalm 139:14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Joshua 1:9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

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