By Conroy Reynolds
A balanced life is imperative. Winning begins in the mind. The finest facilities and the best equipment cannot equal the decisive difference of a winners mind. This is true in every area of life. But development of the winner’s mind requires discipline and training. The following points are fundamental to this endeavor.
1. Listen to Your Words
The scriptures declare that the mouth speaks what the mind believes. Therefore it is critical for us to listen to our words, for they are a revelation of our thoughts. But if the words reveal the thoughts, they also shape them. Repeating words of scripture for example is an excellent way of changing the tenor of our thoughts. Words of despair coming from a discouraged, disappointed heart will deepen the sadness and make it more difficult to change the way we see things. On the other hand consciously changing our speech can change the course of our thoughts. This is not denying the way we feel, but recognizing it and taking action to change it.
2. Cultivate Mountain Moving Faith
Plant a mustard seed of faith in the mind by choosing to believe that with God all things are possible. The greatest mountains we have to move are mountains in the mind. When I made the decision to resign a successful and satisfying ministry in the Caribbean and relocate to California literally half a world away I had no idea how I would support myself and two kids, but I truly believed that God knew the circumstances and would not let us fall. Since then I have seen many evidences that despite my unfaithfulness he remains faithful. Perhaps you face a life changing decision and may doubt you have the ability or the courage needed to make it, understand that your greatest barrier may be in your mind.
3. Live Within the Will of God
Living in the will of God increases confidence to face impossible odds. It infuses courage and provides guidance. Knowing and living in the will of God requires what I call the five Cs of Victory; Communion, Contemplation, Cooperation, Communication, and Celebration.
Communion with God in prayer involves learning to listen to the inner voice of his spirit, “Be still and know.”
Contemplation is thinking about the impressions, thoughts and ideas flowing out of communion.
Communication involves consulting with trusted advisors who bring wisdom and spiritual insight to bear on your conclusions.
Cooperation is readiness to follow through with actions needed to fulfill the plans
Celebration is the natural outgrowth of living in the will of God. Each day is an opportunity to experience the joy of his presence and the satisfaction of his approval. Cultivate a spirit of thanksgiving and gratitude.
4. Avoid Toxic Situations and People
Your mind is your greatest asset; determine to protect it from those who would poison it. Generally, I define these as anything or anyone that would generate feelings of self-pity, self-hatred, self-doubt and irrational fears without helping us toward resolution. The advice of Paul is on the mark, “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable think about such things” (Phil 4:8)
5. Strive for Total Well Being
We live in four interlocking dimensions of being, body-the physical; mind-thoughts; emotions-feelings and spirit-the sum total of ourselves. Time and effort invested in total health results in optimal performance in all dimensions.
6. Learn to see with the Third Eye, the Eye of the Spirit
Often we are fixated on the situation as it appears before the natural eye and we are frustrated into inactivity. The third eye sees divine activity at work on our behalf. Centuries ago the prophet Elijah when surrounded by enemy soldiers seeking to capture him prayed that God would open the eyes of his terrified servant. When his eyes were opened he was able to see the surrounding hills filled with angels ready to deliver the prophet. We need to always keep in mind that in our struggle, we are not alone there are divine forces engaged in battle for us. The third eye helps us see ourselves as God sees us, objects of his love and trophies of his kingdom. We are indeed on the winning side.
Conroy Reynolds, MS MA is a mental health chaplain and ordained pastor. He is also the author of “Finding God in the Dark.” More information is available at: www.conroyreynolds.com.