Aren’t you just fascinated by the human brain? God created us so intricately. In the bible, God reminds us to renew our thoughts daily. If we don’t take control of our thoughts, toxic thinking will control our lives. In this post, Kris Reece shares her 4 step process that shows you how to renew your mind and put an end to toxic thinking.
Recently, on the Your Hope-Filled Perspective podcast, I had the chance to talk with Kris about another fascinating subject – how to practically train our brains to trust God more. If you missed that episode, I’d encourage you to listen here [How To Train Your Brain To Trust God – Episode 115].
Read to the end for a book giveaway!
Toxic Thinking: Take Control of Your Thoughts
by Kris Reece
Hi, I’m Kris Reece and I confess, I’m a recovering control freak.
I lived many decades of my life trying desperately to control other people and situations. In classic control freak fashion, I would justify all of my actions (and reactions) by saying things like, “I’m just trying to protect you,” and “I’m not angry, I’m passionate.” I was the type who couldn’t take criticism and blamed others for my misfortune.
And if I wasn’t controlling, I was ‘figuring things out’ (aka worry).
And I’ll admit that while I am very happy I am no longer that person, I still get tempted to control sometimes. So, I was relieved to discover that there is one area where God actually commands that I control.
In fact, this is one thing we should all be obsessive about controlling—our thoughts.
That’s right, I want you to apply all of your well-honed controlling muscles on taming your mind.
Romans 12:2 and Ephesians 4:23 reminds us that we are to renew our thoughts daily. That means we need to be in control of what we’re thinking, because if we aren’t, the same toxic thoughts will be controlling our life.
There are 4 steps that you can follow to take control of your toxic thoughts:
Step 1: Capture the thought.
2 Corinthians 10:5 says we are to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ. The first step in doing this is to continually identify what you’re thinking about and the content of those thoughts -including the feelings.
Step 2: Interrogate the thought.
When you notice yourself having a negative thought, ask it questions such as, “Where did you come from?” and “What are you doing here?” Asking these questions can begin to reveal deeper issues—areas of your life that still need healing or old wounds you haven’t let go of.
Step 3: Line it up with Truth.
You can spend a lifetime ignoring truth and believing lies. I believe that God’s Word is truth. So, if you’re worrying about finances and God’s word says that He will supply all of your needs (Phil. 4:19) that’s a thought that has to go. If He says that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19), then that nagging thought to start eating better likely is from God. When you compare your thoughts to God’s word, you know which thoughts to keep and which to get rid of.
Step 4. Rewrite your thought according to the Word of God (truth).
Find the scripture that relates to your thought and then put it into your own words and apply it to whatever situation you’re facing. When a thought is in your own words, you’re more likely to believe it. So, create your new thought and keep repeating it out loud, even if you don’t believe it at first.
Mind renewal is not a one and done experience. Romans 12:2 and Ephesians 4:23 reminds us to be renewed in our thoughts DAILY.
If you’re like me, there will be plenty of times where you are tempted to follow your feelings.
Feelings come and go, so if you chase after feelings, you will get quite a workout, but in the long run, get nowhere.
Instead go by what you KNOW, not what you ‘feel’.
So what do you KNOW?
Do you KNOW that God loves you?
Do you KNOW that all things work together for good?
Do you KNOW that God will never leave you?
Then go by what you KNOW not by what you ‘feel.’
Don’t get me wrong, it’s important that you learn how to listen to your feelings, because they indicate what’s going on inside of you. The key is to not yield to them.
If all you’ve ever known is a lie, it’s time you learned the truth. I want to encourage you to dive into God’s Word as if your life depended on it, because it does.
If you’re not sure just how toxic your thoughts are, take the How Toxic are My Thoughts Quiz. Toxic Thoughts Assessment.
What thoughts do you struggle with most? How will you put into practice training your brain to trust God more? We’d love to hear in the comments below.
About Dr. Kris Reece
Kris Reece holds a Ph.D. in Christian Counseling and a Masters Degree in Theology. Kris’ passion lies in helping others to defeat life’s devils, grow in their faith and become everything God created them to be. She is a practical bible teacher, Christian Counselor, author and YouTuber. Her heart is to see God’s people healed and living a powerful Christian life. When she is not ministering God’s Word, you can find Kris hanging out with her husband, two girls and ever increasing tribe of fur babies.
Connect with Kris: Website / Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest
In conjunction with this post and the podcast interview, How To Train Your Brain To Trust God – Episode 115, Kris Reece is giving away a free copy of her book, Build a Beautiful Life Out of Broken Pieces.
Leave a comment below sharing with us one thing you’ve learned about taking control of your thoughts to end toxic thinking and you will be entered into the contest for your chance to win a copy of her book.
You could also share this blog post on Facebook or Twitter then comment here to tell us where you shared it and you’ll also be entered into the drawing.
The winner will be selected at random and announced next Monday, July 5, 2021. Continental United States only.
I am so very thankful for this message. Thank you, Kris, and Dr. Michelle, for laying out for us how to take our thoughts captive. I knew I needed to do this because I lived in fear for so many years and the enemy had control in my life to bring that fear but I went to a Bible study many years ago that helped me get free from the control of fear but the enemy will still try to bring thoughts that would take me down that slippery slope road. I LOVE these 4 steps and I will apply the to my life when fear tries to take hold or my thoughts go to ‘I just have done something wrong because’. That also happens to me whether a computer issue or a household issue, I always default to, what did I do wrong. It must be my fault. I did so enjoy the podcast too. I shared it with others and will also share this blog on FB for others to be encouraged.
Thank you. I can choose to persevere and grow in the grace and knowledge of God and become who God created me to be. Thank you.
An ongoing process in my life to know that His grace covers all. I speak aloud my prayers so that I renew and reclaim my thoughts and cast Satan out!
I find the way to rid myself of toxic or negative thoughts is to dwell on His Word and to release my fear of rejection and abandonment to the Lord. I have internalized thoughts that keep me fixated on how to escape from these thoughts which have led to a condition of IBS. Thank you for your good verses given and to daily start my day with a verse from the Lord to cancel these thoughts.
I really love these tips. And need them. The one about rewriting your thoughts in line with God’s word is especially helpful.
Excellent to the MAX! Finally a Doctor who believes in a God-controlled mind. May the Lord richly Bless You.
And I will purchase one of your books on this.
I’ve found this is often most needed when it’s the most difficult to do. Satan’s lies are sneaky and only the truth of who I am in Christ can combat them!
To overcome toxic thinking is to think about if it is something really true or the truth about something and one way you can find out is reading God’s word and thinking what’s really true and what isn’t . Have the mind of Christ and what He thinks and not what others think . If it goes against God’s truth then it’s not true
So helpful, Kris. Recently, I have been paying attention to the notion of “interrogating” my thoughts and motives.
It’s so good to read these suggestions as healthy thinking is an ongoing process, some days easier than others. I’m grateful you share such wonderful resources!