Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Every Thought

In my last article, I challenged married couples to act; to DO something with knowledge gained or a lesson learned. I said that knowledge or wisdom without action is as dead as faith without works. Too often we leave valuable information in the hypothetical realm when it could be transforming our marriages, or indeed our lives. “Yeah that’s great advice” we may think. “That’s really insightful,” and it stays there. In theory. Just a thought.

In practice, time keeps rolling along, and our lives go on. We are too busy perhaps, to try something new or change part of our routine. “It might not work,” we think, “and then that time is lost! Better to just maintain the status quo.” So things don’t change - or they change for the worse as the world seeps in.

The world says “make yourself happy.” “What has he or she done for you lately?” “She doesn’t look like *this* or he doesn’t romance me like that.” “Marriage is boring, life is short, the grass is greener.” The enemy’s voice is all around us, whispering in our ears, poisoning our thoughts.

Perhaps the hardest work to do is to follow Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 10:5

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 

We know what we should do. We’ve read the Bible.

- A kind word turns away wrath, but a hateful one stirs up anger.
- Wives, respect your husbands. Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the church, even giving Himself up for her.
- Do not withhold sexual relations from one another, unless by consent, for a time, to pray. Then come together again.
-and on, and on...

Paul implores us to take every thought captive. Not a few, not most. Every thought made obedient to Christ. That’s a tall order. I’ve often told myself that I can’t control what I think. It’s a by-product of my overactive imagination and creativity, I reason, what can I do? How then can I make my thoughts be obedient to anything? The answer is “with practice.” It is a discipline, a skill that must be exercised. It is a choice that must be made over and over, constantly, daily.

In the context of your marriage, think of how every thought could be obedient to Christ. That is, how could each thought be intent on strengthening your union, on deepening your love for your spouse, on increasing the intimacy between you?