Stress Management Starts in the Mind
“Think about the things that are good and worthy of praise. Think about the things that are true and honorable and right and pure and beautiful and respected.” (Philippians 4:8 NCV)
The battle with stress in your life is going on between your ears. The battle is in your mind! It’s in your thought life. What you fill your mind with determines the level of stress in your life.
If you want peace of mind, you’re going to have to start controlling what you allow in it. Whatever you put in your mind is going to come out in your life.
The Bible says to “think about the things that are good and worthy of praise. Think about the things that are true and honorable and right and pure and beautiful and respected” (Philippians 4:8 NCV).
If you want to lower your stress, you have to change what you think about and control what you allow in your mind. In this verse, the Bible gives us eight tests for whether we should allow something in our mind or not. Ask yourself, “Is it good? Is it worthy of praise? Is it true? Is it honorable? Is it right? Is it pure? Is it beautiful? Is it respected?
Doesn’t that sound like television? Not at all! Television is getting worse and worse. The heroes on TV today are zombies, vampires, serial killers, crack addicts, corrupt politicians, and perverts. And you call that entertainment? There’s enough of that in the world without inviting it into my home.
When you think about things that are good, worthy of praise, true, honorable, right, pure, beautiful, and respected, you’re really picturing God. Paul is saying in Philippians 4:8 to think about God.
Isaiah 26:3 says, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” (NLT)
What you think about determines how stressed and worried you are. If you fix your thoughts on God, He will keep you in perfect peace.
Talk It Over
If you were to ask the eight questions of your favorite TV shows, would they pass the test? Does the answer change anything for you?
What can you do to help direct your thoughts toward God more often throughout the day?
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This devotional © 2016 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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