Dianne Barker here confessing that I sometimes struggle with discouragement. One day while talking with the Lord, I caught myself pouring out my heart about my miserable condition—plagued with a multitude of flaws. I stopped with a jolt.
Lord, what a waste! In the first place, you already know this. In the second place, I’ve thoroughly discouraged myself with this negative train of thought. It would do both of us more good if I spent this time praising you!
That’s when I came up with the idea of thinking and speaking in past tense, emphasizing I was instead of I am.
When I dwell on my weaknesses, reminding myself of past mistakes and present flaws, the accuser’s voice agrees, “And you’ll never change.”
When I view my failure as the result of how I was before putting the Lord in charge of my life, his loving voice bolsters me. “Just look at the change in you!”
I am focuses on failure and casts a shadow of hopelessness. I was puts failure in past tense and bathes my future in hope.
This mental trick helps me establish healthful thought patterns. The Bible teaches I become what I think. “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he…” (Prov. 23:7).
Taking charge of my thinking is a crucial step toward abundant living. Paul encouraged us to think about what is true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report (Phil. 4:8). That means attacking the cobwebs of negative thinking.
I’m tired of living in the dumps, and I don’t intend to waste any more time there. Come with me! There’s a place called Joy, and if we hurry we can get there today!
“Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” (Ps. 16:11).
Dianne Barker is a speaker, radio host, and author of 11 books, including the best-selling Twice Pardoned and award-winning I Don’t Chase the Garbage Truck Down the Street in My Bathrobe Anymore! Organizing for the Maximum Life. She’s a member of Christian Authors Network, Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and Christian Women in Media. Post adapted from Cabbages and Kings—Reflections on Living Abundantly in Christ. Visit www.diannebarker.com.