Forget the things that happened in the past. Do not keep on thinking about them. I am about to do something new. It is beginning to happen even now (Isaiah 43:18-19, NIRV).
Negative memories can get stuck in our minds and then be constantly recycled.
If we don’t eliminate these memories, they become a faster and faster-paced treadmill. We think about them over and over.
I’ve noted through years of pastoring that a single negative memory, insignificant in the scope of an entire life but when replayed continuously, changes a personality to emotional despair.
Not for me, and prayerfully not for you. Let’s eliminate these memories this week. What can be done?
Negativity can become so ingrained in our thinking that it becomes the norm.
Since it’s the norm, we build emotional (and conversational) mechanisms to defend our state of negativity — enabling a bad experience to become a recycled memory and eventually develop into a stronghold.
The most negative people that I know don’t realize they are so negative.
Jesus rebuked Peter, saying, “Get behind me, Satan” (Matthew 16:23), and Paul opposed Peter to his face over Peter’s hypocrisy in withdrawing from eating with Gentiles (Galatians 2:11-13).
When we note evil in our thoughts and actions, we must rebuke it. Negativity begins with large and small compromises.
With some of my worst memories, I got off my cycle of negativity by talking to the person who started the problem.
Jesus takes it further when saying we must love and pray for our enemies (Matthew 5:44-45). And Paul adds that we are to feed our enemies, overcoming evil with good (Romans 12:20-21).
Identify/Rebuke/Serve. We should remember “IRS” as April 15th approaches.
Lately, I’ve experienced a flood of negative thoughts. Winter can be a forlorn season for me. A few days ago, I began writing in my journal “My Top Ten Most Frustrating/Embarrassing/Anger Producing Moments” in my life.
I stopped at #2 when I remembered …
Forget the things that happened in the past. Do not keep on thinking about them. I am about to do something new. It is beginning to happen even now. (Isaiah 43:18-19, NIRV).
That’s the power of God’s Word. I was just about to get on the negative treadmill, and God spoke to me.
Speak to us, Jesus. Help us Identify, Rebuke, and then Serve.