Leading a Secret Thought Life
"The secret thoughts of a man run over all things, holy, profane, clean,
obscene, grave and light, without shame or blame." Thomas Hobbes
- Would you be embarrassed if your friends and associates knew what
went on inside your mind?
- Each of us has a secret thought life, an invisible life known only
to us -- it is not known to others.
- This secret life is usually very different from the visible you,
yet, it is the real you, the you that is known by God.
The Battle for the Mind
- Every day we battle for the control of our minds.
- What is the difference between a temptation and an actual sin in
our thought life?
- The thoughts that enter our minds are not sin.
- When our normal observations become abnormal preoccupations, we
have crossed the line.
- "We cannot help it if birds fly over our heads. It is another
thing if we invite them to build nests in our hats." Martin Luther
- "Temptation is sexual attraction to a beautiful woman. Sin is
walking around the block for another look."
Visibility versus Awareness
- The goal of our secret thought life, since it is no secret from
God, should be to live a life of personal holiness.
- The visibility of our speech and actions helps keep us in line.
Peer pressure may actually influence us to live righteously more than
fear of a holy God.
- High visibility sins are usually sins of speech and
- Low visibility sins are usually sins of our private
- Awareness of our sins usually causes us to attempt to adopt group
mores in speech and action.
- Combining visibility and awareness:
- High visibility/high awareness
- High visibility/low awareness
- Low visibility/high awareness
- Low visibility/low awareness
- If we will make a commitment to become more aware of our thought
life, if we will pause occasionally and ask, "Why?" when our thoughts
don't seem to be our own, then we will have taken a giant stride toward
conquering our thought life.
- Unless we develop a solid understanding of how our thoughts,
motives, and ambitions are shaped, we will have impure secret thoughts,
wrong motives, and selfish ambitions.
- "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious
thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the
way everlasting." Psalm 139:23-24
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