Most of us probably have the same reaction when we come across good and wise advice. Immediately we think of all the other people we know who should hear it and heed it, making our lives better if they did.
We usually don’t consider our own selves as the intended audience for those snippets of wisdom, and if we thought they were directed at us we would probably be insulted.
The other day, I read such a piece of wisdom from a place that has so much information yet much less substance: Facebook. This forum called social media is a high-speed, fast-forward blur of the lives, photos, opinions, selfies, holidays, children and everything else associated with our five hundred closest friends and random associates.
I was not expecting profound wisdom but there it was as plain as the nose on my face, “Don’t Believe Everything You Think” was its proclamation. At first it amused me, as I considered all the people I knew who could benefit from this principle. Then it angered me, as I began to feel it might have been an assault on my personal character simply veiled as a general post viewed by countless millions. Finally, it humbled me, as I accepted that wisdom such as this could improve my life if I consider it, weigh it and evaluate myself in its reflection, or can do nothing for me if I simply wish its benefits on others.
The obvious place to start with this particular idea is to take some time to ponder what do I think? But a more important consideration is how did I come to think it?
Most of us have strong, established opinions on things like the best brand of truck, the best phone, or the best style of music. Why? It is mostly because we’ve been exposed to it, a lot, by people, our families, friends and society, as well as all that advertising and broadcasts that intentionally want us to like what they like, what they are selling, or ideas they represent.
The psychology of advertising reveals that repeated exposure to ideas, even the ones you disagree with, will eventually cause you to believe they are true.
You are probably thinking about all of those people you know who are so passionate about their brand of truck, phone, or their other ideas, and they don’t even realize that they might be fighting for and believing in things that aren’t even their own thoughts. That might be a little amusing to us.
But you are probably not thinking that If this is true, then most of your own thoughts and beliefs are not really your own. Now you might be a little insulted. Them, yes, but certainly not me!
Sadly, yes you, and yes me too, and all of us, we cannot believe what we think because we are not the source of most, if any of our own thoughts.
We are all followers, manipulated to think and believe without considering where these beliefs come from, if the source is pure or tainted!
The only hope we have, is choosing who or what will influence us most and represent our best interest.
It is humbling to accept that this is a real truth, yet refreshing to consider that if indeed there is a God like the perfect, holy, loving God of the Bible, He would be the best choice to align your beliefs with, be influenced by and to trust with your thoughts and beliefs.
I wasn’t always a faith filled person, but I have very much become a believer in the God of the Bible, the Bible itself and the Savior Jesus Christ. My life has been transformed through Believing God’s thoughts about me and God’s thoughts about others. Your life can be transformed too.
“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.” Isaiah 55:8