4 Steps to Take Your Thoughts Captive

4 Steps to Take Your Thoughts Captive
Can you easily stop thinking negative thoughts?

If you're like most people, the answer is no. 

It's not easy - it's also not impossible.

Scripture instructs us to "take captive every thought to the obedience of Christ." (2 Cor. 10:5)

But how do I do that, and how can it help my marriage?

Here are some steps to take:

1. Recognize the negative thought.
Our feelings are a result of our thoughts. If you are feeling irritable, angry, hurt, or sad, notice what thoughts you've been thinking.

2. Once you've identified the thought, ask yourself, "Is this true? Is it factual? Is it possible that this is only my opinion or perception?"
Truth is something that would hold up in a court of law. If it's open to interpretation (e.g. obviously he doesn't care, he's lazy, he's self-absorbed), then it isn't truth. Sometimes we need to ask God for wisdom and discernment to recognize the lies, because the enemy can disguise these as truth.

3. Pray over the thought and release it to God. 
Thank Him for His willingness to take it from you, and for His mercy and forgiveness. Pray over your husband, or whomever else you had the negative thought. Praying for the person who hurt us can change our thoughts dramatically.

4. Replace the thought with something that is "pure, lovely, and praiseworthy" according to Philippians 4:8.
It's not enough to try and just stop thinking a negative thought. We have to replace it with a positive one. Pray over your husband, or whomever else you had the negative thought. Praying for the person who hurt us can change our thoughts dramatically. Consider their situation and view it from their point of view. Offer the same measure of grace you would offer yourself. Seek to assign positive motives for their behavior, such as they were truly trying to help, they really didn't mean to cause harm and just didn't recognize it, or they were so busy and could probably use some understanding and support.

When you change your thoughts, you change your feelings. When you feel more positive, you will treat your husband more positively. It sounds simple, but this can have such a profound effect on your marriage!

We hear all the time that we should take our thoughts captive, but the practical application and how-to are often missing. 

My prayer is that these four steps will be helpful in arming you to battle against negative, false, and harmful thoughts that do not serve you, or your marriage.

Sweet friend, how can I pray over you and your marriage today? Share in the comments or email me directly!

3 Things to Remember When You're in a Difficult or Painful Season

3 Things to Remember When You're in a Difficult or Painful Season
In the midst of the thickness, it can be very difficult to grab a hold of truth. We have to train our brains to take every thought captive and choose instead to focus on things that are "true, pure, lovely, and praise-worthy". 

Here are three truths for you to focus on in those times.

1. God is GOOD. 

It's important to remember this first, because everything else flows out of it. Everything God does is out of His goodness and love. He IS love. He created love, He created goodness, and He embodies them entirely. Every decision He makes, every situation He allows, is because He is GOOD. Just because you don't agree with what's happening, just because it might be painful, does not mean He isn't good. You can't possibly know what the alternatives were that the enemy was attempting to throw at you. Trust in God's goodness, that what He gives you and allows is so much better than any alternative.

2. God is WISE. 

We'd like to think we have all the answers and know what's best, but God knows better. He knows HOW to fix everything. Although sometimes it seems like He's not fixing things, or at least not at the speed we'd like, we have to look back at the first point - He is GOOD. Yes, He knows the WISE choice for every situation, and He knows the GOOD choice for every situation.

3. God is STRONG. 

Sometimes we can know that God is good, and we know He is wise, but we lack belief that He is strong enough to pull it off. Friend, God created strength. He IS pure strength! Not only is He wise enough and good enough to know what the best decisions are for us, but He is STRONG enough to carry out any task that is necessary. HE CAN DO IT.

If we can focus our hearts on these three things when we're struggling, our faith will grow and we will be able to watch miracle after miracle take place in our lives.


Friend, which of these three truths are you struggling with today? 
Which one is the easiest for you to believe?

Let me know how I can pray for you today!


What to do when you need a miracle

What to do when you need a miracle
Do you need a miracle right now, in some area of your life?

Are your finances in disarray, is your marriage in shambles, do you need a situation to be turned around completely?

In 2 Kings 4:1-7, we read about a woman who needed a miracle. Her husband had died, and a creditor was coming to take her two sons as slaves. She had nothing.

What can we learn from her story?

1. Seek godly counsel. 
This wise woman sought counsel from the prophet Elisha. She didn't just go vent to her friends, or complain on the internet about her creditors and how cruel they were. She knew there was a man who knew God who could guide her in a righteous manner.

2. Obey.
When Elisha told her to go ask for a bunch of jars from her neighbors, she didn't ask why. It seemed an odd request, when all she currently had in her home was one single jar of oil, to gather a bunch more, "not too few" as he instructed. She did as he asked, and made sure her sons obeyed as well. She was an example to them of diligent and immediate obedience. There was no hesitation or questioning. {Side note: always, always weigh counsel against the Word of God - if you're being asked to sin or do anything that contradicts scripture, this is not godly counsel.}

3. Watch and wait.
As she poured into the jars, one after another, she saw them continue to fill with oil until she ran out of jars -  not oil. God provided as much oil as for the amount of jars the widow collected. No more, no less. And once they were filled, she was able to pay off all of her debts and live on the remainder with her sons - after she did additional work of selling the jars of oil.

Miracle accomplished! 

Notice that God didn't just grant her request in a split second, the way we'd like sometimes. 

Her obedience was necessary for the miracle to be carried out.

Friend, what miracle do you need today? Have you asked God what it is He wants you to do in order to carry out His will? 

I would love to cover you in prayer. Please share with me how I can pray with you, either in the comments or sending me a message.

Are you waiting for a miracle?

Are you waiting for a miracle?
'Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim. And he said to them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the feast.” So they took it. ' John 2:7-8
How many times have you prayed for a miracle in your marriage?

How many years have you asked God to do a work in your husband, to fix the relationship, to turn things around to where they were when you first chose each other?

After all of those prayers, what did you do?

Did you say, "Amen" and then wait in anticipation for God to perform His miracle?

Or did you sit quietly and listen for Him to give you instructions on how you could partner with Him to make it happen?

In John's recount of Jesus' first public miracle when He turned water into wine, he notes that Jesus asked the servants to fill the jars with water. They obeyed, and then He asked them to draw some out and bring it to the host of the wedding.

Jesus could have easily filled the jars Himself through a miracle, or He could have miraculously refilled the empty wine glasses or pitchers with wine.

Yet He didn't. He asked the servants to partner with Him in carrying out this miracle. 

We've all heard the story of the loaves and fishes, when Jesus multiplied the small amounts that were given. He could have created a spectacular meal for everyone there by miraculously supplying all sorts of meats, cheeses, fruits, and wine.

But He didn't. He used what was given, and then He used the disciples to distribute the food to everyone.

In almost every single miracle Jesus performed, He didn't simply snap His fingers, or wiggle His nose. He used people that were willing to accomplish what needed to be done.

What can we learn from this when we're praying for a miracle?

  1. We need to be open to allowing God to use us in accomplishing His miracles, not just pray and expect Him to "do His thing".
  2. Our hearts must be willing to obey what He asks of us - including what He's already expressed in Scripture. Are you reading His word daily, taking note of what He's instructed wives to do to build up their marriages and homes? Are you intentional to obey those instructions, even the hard ones like "obey your husband"?
  3. We must have eyes open to see the small miracles He's already performing. The host of the wedding didn't even notice a miracle had occurred; how many miracles are we missing?
It's possible that your miracle is waiting around the corner, and God is simply holding out His hand for you to take and partner with Him before He brings it to fruition.

What miracle are you praying for today? How can I pray for you?