Strengthening the Front Lines of the Mind{Five: Strongholds of Imaginations}

https://www.flickr.com/photos/simonekphoto/2358733295/in/photostream/

Old English Sheepdog

From Ruler to Mileposts

Give them an inch and they will take a mile.  Sound familiar?  I thought so. Imagination is something we have to nip in the bud before it runs away with us.  Especially vain imaginations.  If we don’t they will take over.

What we Fear

As a wife I worry about my husband when he has worked all night after not sleeping all day.  I pray for his safety because I want to be sure he pulls in the driveway safe and sound.  I start eying the clock about a half hour after he gets off so I can be relieved by the sound of him coming in the door.

If he doesn’t come when I am watching, I begin to worry.  All sorts of imagination begins to pop into my head.  Most of the things I think have happened are possible, but highly unlikely to have occurred.  However, if I don’t nip that fear in the bud it grows large and monstrous. I can let the fear of death, abandonment, and the like enter in and take over my emotions.

4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, 6 and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.

2 Cor 10:4-6 (NKJV)

Perception is Reality

Vain imaginations are presumptions and assumptions.  Our perceptions can become our reality and shape our thinking in a dangerous way.  Just recently as I have been shopping with my daughter she comments constantly on why everyone is looking at her.  She has somehow developed an overactive conscious in a crowd.  She doesn’t want people to look at her.  I am still trying to teach her that most people don’t realize they are, and to just ignore it, but I wonder why she has the perception that it is for evil intent.  She has accepted someone else’s perception of her as something to fear.  She has a false reality due to insecurity that had crept in unchecked.

I think back to being a child, and I had the same fears that people were talking about me.  Of course not everyone was, but I didn’t know why they were laughing when I walked by, and I assumed it was about me.  I had insecurities that led to imaginations.  My perception of myself influenced what I thought everyone else thought about me.  Insecure thoughts are very dangerous.

Getting Unstuck

A few years ago I named my imagination Barkley.  Barkley was a large dog from Sesame Street who had a mind of his own.  He was so big and I got a kick out of watching him as a kid.  Yet, he was a dog.  He just acted on instinct like all the others.  He didn’t pay any mind to what was good, just what he wanted right then.  Our imaginations can forget the truth, and run a muck with all manner of lies.  Then our perception becomes our immediate reality, and before we know it we are stuck in our vain imagination.

Whether we battle imaginations of insecurity, fear, or worry about loved ones, our past, our current reality, our future, or something else, we need to trap those thoughts at the front desk of our mind, and tell them they can’t rent a room.  We need to declare there are no vacancies in which those thoughts can dwell.  Otherwise they will soon be roaming the halls of our mind.

Give your imagination a name and stick with it.  I just tell Barkley, “sit and be a good dog”, while I chase down reality and the truth of God’s word for my situation.

Faith in Action

What are some vain imaginations you are dealing with?  Tell them to sit, and when they do, take them captive, and show them the no vacancy sign.

Here is a printable coloring page I found of Barkley. I know we are adults here, but we need reminders in this world that pounds us with images.  Print the page and put it on your fridge.  Write down scripture I gave about casting down imaginations that argue with your faith.  Slowly but surely the halls of your mind will be emptied of those you don’t want lingering and having free access.

Barkley Printable <3 Melinda