HOW TO DEFEAT WORRY: TAKING THOUGHTS CAPTIVE
2 Corinthians 10:3-6 speaks of taking EVERY thought captive and making it obedient to God by His WORD; this is how you keep your heart clean. “For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.” 2 Corinthians10:3-6ESV
Step 1: The Rebuke, The Correction, Giving the enemy the Hand, The Slap Down, and the Spiritual Stiff Arm:
When a negative thought comes into your mind you say, “I rebuke that thought in the name of Jesus.” To rebuke means to correct something that is wrong. You can also use the words refuse, reject, or the phrase “I cast that thought down in The Name of Jesus.” This Step stops the temptation from gaining momentum and turning into worry, doubt, and confusion. This keeps the negative seeds and fiery darts from landing in your heart and mind and taking root. You cannot stop the thoughts of temptation from coming into your mind, but once they are present, then you have full authority and power on how you respond to those temptations. The enemy will often use these thoughts in an attempt to frustrate you by trying to make you feel guilty. However, that is when you rebuke even those thoughts and give yourself some grace. Remind yourself that it is not the actual temptations that will arise that you can control, but how you respond to those temptations because that is within your full power, authority, and control.
Step 2: The Release and The Removal of the Negative Seeds from your heart, The Forgiveness Exchange where you Give Forgiveness and Receive Forgiveness:
After Step 1, you want to confess to God the negative thought of worry, repent of it saying, “Lord, I confess my thoughts of worrying about _________ to You, and I thank You that I am forgiven in Jesus’ Name.” Then you give Forgiveness: “Lord, I forgive by faith and choose to release _______________ (any negative thoughts, feelings, or person(s) that may have wronged you), and I choose to instead love and forgive.” The first Step stops the temptation from taking root in your heart and mind. Step 2 releases and removes the negative thoughts that did come into your heart and mind. This release and removal is likened to tending a garden and pulling the weeds out of the garden of your heart. This is the way you are able to keep any negative seeds from taking root in your heart, no matter how small the seed. Any seed that does land in your heart or mind, produces after its kind.
So if it is a seed of frustration, worry, doubt, or confusion, it will produce those same things in your heart and mind. It is kind of like playing a game of basketball or football, nothing happens in the game until the ball is released. Likewise, this release of negative thoughts; the receiving and giving of forgiveness is a vital step to winning the battlefield of your mind and thus the game of life. This is exactly why you want to immediately release and remove anything that the enemy is trying to sow into your heart and mind.
Step 3: The Declaring, The Claiming, The Receiving and The Planting of the Good things of God into Your Life and the Lives of Others:
In Step 3, you want to pray the opposite of the negative thought to which you are being tempted. For instance, if the negative thought is some worry about your spouse because of something they may have said that irritates you, you would instead pray for them the opposite way of the temptation. Say, “Lord, Jesus, I thank You that my spouse is loving and kind and that our relationship is full of love and blessings.” Begin to bless your marriage, and call by faith what you positively see and want in your spouse by declaring blessings over them. Then pray for yourself to be loving, caring, and kind as this will begin to bless your life as well. When choosing the practice of taking thoughts captive, repenting, forgiving, and releasing your faith in prayer, this will help you keep your heart clean and your life blessed and prosperous!
The first two steps were defensive in nature, but you cannot win a sports game by only playing defense. In order to win, you have to play a game with some offense as well. The first two steps you were responding to the temptation and keeping your heart clean by resisting the enemy’s temptations and removing whatever might have landed on your heart! This third step is where you become offensive, and you bless your life and the lives of others. When you pray and speak THE WORD of God over your life and others, there are things that begin moving in the spiritual realm on our behalf. God’s WORD says that Ministering Spirits and Angels work on our behalf as we pray and release our faith in praying and declaring blessings over ourselves and others God honors our faith, love, and hope.
The enemy recognizes this Truth so when you begin to put these three steps into play, you render the enemy’s attack ineffective in a lot of ways. You are in essence becoming much harder for the enemy to tempt. You will find that the longer you have been putting this into practice in your life, the easier it will be for you to defeat the enemy’s temptations. You will begin to learn how to dominate the enemy and control your thought life, thus controlling your mind, will, and emotions instead of allowing them to control you. Living like this will cause you to walk in the power and authority that Jesus gave us in His finished work on the cross. As you live this out as a daily practice and choice of lifestyle, you will experience the Fruits of the Spirit: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Meekness, Gentleness, Kindness, Faithfulness, and Self-control overflow in your life in all areas. This type of lifestyle is one of freedom and victory in Christ Jesus!
I would like to share with you a couple of tips about living the steps out. First of all, give yourself some Grace when you first begin to do this because you are probably going to find out that you have a lot more negative thoughts than you assumed you had. Secondly, do not let this frustrate you or get you off track. Instead, let yourself off the hook, forgive yourself, give yourself some Grace, and realize that you, as well as all of us, are works in progress! Lastly, remember that you cannot stop the thoughts of temptation, or in this case, thoughts of worry to come into your mind because that is the work of the enemy. What you do have in your control, accountability of and full authority over is how you respond to these thoughts. It’s time to start winning the battlefields of our mind! It’s time for you to start living the victorious life that Jesus Christ already bought and paid in full for you to possess! The Choice is YOURS!
God Bless YOU! And Remember this always, Jesus Loves YOU! #SpreadGodsLove