(Below are Nicole's thoughts on Chapter 9 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 and/or scripture below this post. Let's dig deep and join together to fight this battle.)
In Chapter 9, A Wandering, Wondering Mind, Joyce Meyer talks about the importance of gaining control of your mind so that it doesn't wander and so that you don't spend so much time wondering about things you shouldn't.
For me, a wandering mind describes my mind perfectly. Wondering isn't so much of an issue for me as a wandering mind. However, if you have a "wondering mind" I'd love to hear your thoughts on this as well!
What's sad is that my mind doesn't seem to wander during television shows, chitchatting with friends and family or when I check my email. For me, it's during prayer. My prayers at bedtime usually sound a little like this inside my mind...
Dear God, thank you so much for this day today. Thanks for keeping me and my family safe. I'm really needing some help right now with patience and understanding. Oh, I wonder what time we're leaving for the mall tomorrow. I really need to get my grocery list ready before I go. I can't believe that so and so forgot to call me back today. I wonder if I've made them mad. I think I want to go visit my sister soon. I haven't been up there for like 8 months......zzzzzzzzz
What I meant to pray for is my friend whose Grandma recently passed away. For my husband who is overwhelmed at work. For my children's safety. However, before I even started to pray for my friends and family, my mind started to wander. I didn't cover them in prayer like I meant to do. Joyce reminds us throughout chapter 9 about the following...
* An inability to concentrate indicates mental attack from the devil. (p. 87)
* The devil knows that a person cannot discipline himself to complete a project if he cannot discipline his mind and keep it on what he is doing. (p. 89)
* ...if the devil went through the trouble to attack me with a wandering mind, then perhaps something was being said that I needed to hear. (p. 89)
* The devil will give up when he sees that you are not going to give in. (p. 89)
I think about autism and realize how often my prayers aren't heard because of my wandering mind. I completely forget to pray over a new therapy I researched earlier in the day. I forget to give God my worries over my son's progress. It's pretty sad that we can go to God and ask, ask, ask then when it's time for us to listen, listen, listen our minds are not on track and not paying any bit of attention to what He's saying. We're too busy wandering!
In chapter 9, Joyce teaches us that we need to discipline our minds to stop wandering. How do we do this? When we pray, stay focused and make sure we're actually praying and not just saying the words. When we read the Bible, make sure we're comprehending God's word and not just reading the word. My favorite thing that she recommends that we do is to get a cd of your church's service so that you can hear it again and really let it sink in.
I decided to start something new that I'd like to share with you. I am a list maker. I get a lot of comfort out of making a to-do list for my day. There's something about crossing things off my list that makes me feel successful. Therefore, I made a "To Be Prayed Over" list. On this list are things and people I want to pray over, things I'm thankful for and things I need to give to God. Then, I pray over this list throughout the day. At the end of the day when I say my bedtime prayers, my mind will be so focused on what and who I need to pray for that my mind will not have time to wander. The best part is, I'll have prayed all day! Satan will have no room in my mind!
Now, I have to ask you...is your mind wandering? If so, take the time to read this chapter again. Really let God speak to you and tell you what He needs for you to hear. Stop your mind from wandering!
The following are the Bible verses that Joyce has throughout Chapter 9. I've listed them below in New Living Translation.
Bible Verses from Chapter 9
"So think clearly and exercise self-control..." - 1 Peter 1:13
"As you enter the house of God, keep your ears open and your mouth shut. It is evil to make mindless offerings to God." - Ecclesiastes 5:1
"I tell you the truth, you can say to the mountain, 'May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,' and it will happen. But you must really believe it will happen and have no doubt in your heart. I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you've received it, it will be yours." - Mark 11:23-24