(Below are Nicole's thoughts on Chapter 5 of Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer. We'd love to hear your thoughts on this chapter as well. Feel free to leave a comment, question or scripture in the comment section below this post. Let's dig deep and join together to fight this battle!)
....it shall be done for you as you have believed.... -Matthew 8:13
For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.... -Proverbs 23:7
Negative Nancy....have you ever been called that before? I'm sure we all have. It's so hard in today's society to not be negative. We look at all of the devastation around us in this time of war, this time of poverty and this time of sickness and it's very hard to be positive. However, what Joyce teaches us in Chapter 5 is that now is the time for us to be positive. It doesn't mean you run around being Miss Perfect-Happy-Go-Lucky. It means that you have the faith in God to help you through any negativities that are thrown your way. You accept your situation and realize that it is happening but you also rely on God to allow the good to come out of it.
Being a positive person doesn't mean you are living in your own little perfect world where nothing can go wrong. It means that you can be the person that Joyce reminded us that Apostle Paul tells us to be in Romans 12:16....the kind who plans things but doesn't fall apart if the plan don't work out. I think back to the moment I was told I was having twins. For the next three years, I had our lives planned out. They would be the best of friends. They would go to school together. They would build forts throughout the house. Climb trees. Play in the treehouses. I even had them marrying sisters. All of a sudden, my plans came crashing down when one of boys was diagnosed with autism. Then, over the next three years I slowly watched their relationship change. I didn't have a choice. I had to change my plans. They were now in two different schools. One would make new friends. One would try his hardest to get his brother to play with him. Climb trees, build forts, chase him around the yard. He didn't care, just play with him. While the other slipped into his own world as we desperately tried to get him to be with us. As his mother, I had no choice. My plans changed. I couldn't be disappointed because then I felt like I was disappointed in God. This is the life we were given. God knows what we need in our lives. We just have to adjust our plans a little. Yes, my boys are the best of friends. Sure they may need a little help from me but they climb trees together, build forts, and play in the treehouses. (I even have two sisters picked out for them who live right up the street.)
Here's the thing, if we consume our minds with negative thoughts how in the world will good ever prevail in this world. Sure it hurts if what we hope for doesn't come true. But how much more sad is it if it doesn't come true because we didn't hope for it. As we pray for God's will to be done in our lives, we have to accept whatever his will is and know that it is the best for us all.
No matter what is thrown at us in this life...autism, cancer, divorce, poverty....we have to remember what Joyce tells us on page 50...."have a ready mind". Having a ready mind isn't being negative. It's basically accepting what is going on, being positive and trusting that God is with you through it. There's a bigger reason that we can not see.
I'd like to close this post with what Joyce says on page 50 in regards to the young lady whose engagement was broken off. (She put a small paragraph showing us how to have a positive ready mind.) However, I've changed it up a bit to focus it around our children having autism. I hope it helps you as much as it has me today.
...I'm really sad that my child has autism, but I'm going to trust God. I hope my children will still be the closest friends, share the deepest secrets and the have the most fun together. I am going to ask and believe that my son will be healed from autism; but more than anything, I want God's perfect will. If it doesn't turn out the way I want it to, I'll survive, because Jesus lives in me. It may be hard for a while, but I trust in the Lord. I believe that in the end everything will work out for the best.....
As Joyce puts it afterwards...."this is facing the facts, having a ready mind and still being positive."
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding. -Proverbs 3:5
Dear Lord, I thank you so much for everything you are giving us through this study. I pray that you will keep us all safe from negative thoughts. Help us see the positive in everything that comes our way but to most of all trust in you. Amen.