Let’s Eliminate Negative Memories This Week

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?

First: Identify

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.

Second: Rebuke

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.

Third: Serve

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.

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