What’s on your mind?
Did you notice that each of the eight topics that Brother Paul gave us to think about in Philippians 4:8 have many of the same synonyms? Check it out!
The most common synonyms for our eight words are:
ethical · good · honest · honorable · righteous · trustworthy · upright · upstanding · virtuous · worthy
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.Philippians 4:8 (KJV)
Many times Yeshua (Jesus) will say things in pairs. Have you noticed that many times He gives two parables that are about the same thing. This is done for emphasis.
Well, consider this. If Paul used eight words to describe the one thing we should focus on – maybe he did that because it is really, really…, really important.
In Deuteronomy Yehovah tells the children of Israel to dwell on and talk about His instructions all the time – when they wake up, when they walk in the way, when they sit in their tent, and when they lie down.
Train your mind
King Solomon points out that if you train a child the way he should behave when he is young, when he grows up he won’t stray from that path. And not to shrink from disciplining him so he will not be ruined by bad behavior.
We need to train our minds to stay on the narrow path. Think about proper things. As a man thinks in his heart, so is he and where your treasure is there will be your heart.
A couple of other definitions of train – to aim at an object or objective, to direct the growth of a plant.
The vine sends out spiraling shoots, if it has a structure to grow on, it will grow where you want it to. Otherwise it will go up a tree or all over the ground and not be useful. Likewise, if you don’t aim at your objective, train your sites on where you want to go – you will not get there.
So when your mind starts to wander, give it a proper structure to hold onto, point it in the right director with scripture. Write out some scriptures that deal with areas you struggle with to remind you what to think on. Put them on your refrigerator door, attach them to your computer monitor, tape them to your bathroom mirror. Do whatever it takes – you are in training.
to teach so as to make fit, qualified, or proficient
to form by instruction, discipline, or drill
to make prepared (as by exercise) for a test of skill
to direct the growth of (a plant) usually by bending, pruning, and tying
to aim at an object or objective
Scriptures related to mind and training
Colossians 3:2 (NKJV) Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.
Matthew 22:37 (NKJV) Jesus said to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.
Hebrews 12:11 (NASB) All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.
2 Timothy 3: 16-17 (NASB) All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.
Heavenly Father, Help me train my thought life with Your word. Your word is truth and most of the time my thoughts are lies. Teach me to think like You, to discipline my mind. Help me prepare my mind by memorizing scripture and then directing and guiding my thoughts around that structure so that I can meet my objective of having a mind that is stayed on You.