“But I CAN’T make the bad thoughts stop!!! I tried and CAN’T!”
One of the biggest things I used to say, and that I hear from people who have this problem, is that “I have these thoughts and I cannot make them go away! I can’t control my thoughts! I can’t keep from thinking bad things!”.
Nothing can be further from the truth. You have the ability to control what comes in your head. If you are a Christian, you have even been given a spirit of a sound mind from God—that is something you already HAVE.
Your mind will think whatever you tell it to think. You are not psychotic—someone who is actually incapable of distinguishing reality from fantasy. You have a bad thought habit that can be broken. It is hard, but possible. I will show you how easily you can do it:
Right now I want you to think of a blue truck. Close your eyes until you see a blue truck. Okay, now instead of a truck, I want you to think of a red car. Now think of a blue truck and a red car together.
You just controlled three thoughts in a row. You read the instructions. You knew what a truck was and what a car was. You could think of the color red and know it is different than the color blue. You could choose to make the trucks blue in your head and the cars red. You could then put the two separate items (trucks and cars) together. You thought three separate thoughts in a row that did not have anything to do with “what if”. You just proved that you can control your thoughts. You were able to do it. That is all the proof you need to let you know that you can control these bad thoughts. It takes practice to control them but you can. And the more you practice, the better you’ll get.
See, your bad thoughts have worn a sort of mental “groove” in your mind. Your thoughts have become so used to traveling down the path of harm and danger that they just go there. Just like a stream of water wears a groove in a valley, so your thoughts have worn a groove in your mind.
Your brain will follow the path of what you give it. Just like a computer, it will use the information it has been given in the greatest quantity to create its thoughts. Therefore, what you put IN the computer will make a difference. If you constantly allow your brain to think negative thoughts, negative thoughts will what your brain will choose to think. If you direct your brain, train your brain, to think thoughts that the Lord mentioned in Phil 4:8-9 then that is what your brain will think.