Phil 4:8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things.
One of the biggest problem I believe we face today in this nation is the pessimistic outlook and negative imagination. How often do you find your whole attitude is set in a wrong direction by your imagining what could or would or might happen in a situation, so that when you actually come to it you are so frustrated and flustered by what you have been thinking that you are unable to handle the problem. Now I am not talking about simply making a choice to think positive, I am talking about discovering a positive life, the life of Christ.
The passage above is telling us to think about whatever is true. To take things as they are, not as they might be or could be. Whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise. Think of these things. The writer is exhorting us to make a deliberate choice of the will to refuse to think about the negative, but to think of the positive in any situation, or about any person. Then the God of peace will be with you. If you set you mind to this, the God who dwells within, the Holy Spirit, will express himself in terms of peace, confidence and hope rather than strife and confusion.
When you read scripture have you notice that Jesus does not talk to people about religion. He talked to them about life. How they lived, thought and acted, about what they say and how they got along with their neighbors. He did not talk about theological problems, interpersonal demands in life, or existential relations. He came to talk to them about the way they were living, and to show them what life is. He showed them that the secret is a person who dwells within, whose life may be manifested in terms of our personalities, and that everything is designed to drive us back to that. Back to God our creator. Honestly, what do you think about?
Are we prayerfully aligning our thinking to be based on the reality of Christ alive within us, and confident in the good and perfect outcome of God at work in all of life's circumstances?
PRAYER: Almighty God, my Father in heaven, continue to teach me Lord that you are in control and you are adequate to meet any need or challenge that I face. Continue Lord, to remind me that a faith filled optimism is not rooted in my own strength but in the wisdom of your teachings and You. Lord, may I align my thinking to be based on the reality of the Holy Spirit dwelling within me. That Christ is alive within me and He wants the good and positive outcome in all of life's challenges. Father, forgive me of my sins as I forgive those who sin against me. May I Lord, remember that you created all people and you love all people. May I grow to love in this way. Lord I pray for those in need on this day through and in the name of Your Son Jesus. Amen
Meet the pastor
Rev. Pastor Carl Schreiber has been serving East Orrington Congregational Church (EOCC) since March 12, 2006