What condition is your mind in? Have you noticed its condition changes? One time you may be calm, peaceful and certain of yourself. Another time you're anxious, worried and insecure. There’ve been times in my own life when I’ve experienced these things. Sometimes I was able to easily make a decision and stick with it. Other times I couldn't seem to arrive at a decision at all. Doubt, fear and uncertainty haunted me mercilessly. I second-guessed myself and couldn’t make up my mind.
I didn’t know that I could do anything about my thought life. I thought I was destined to be indecisive. I believed in God—and had for many years—but I had no teaching at all about my thought life or the proper condition of a believer's mind. Years ago when I began to get a lot more serious about my relationship with the Lord, I learned that many of my problems with indecision were rooted in wrong thinking patterns. My mind was undisciplined. It was a mess! I doubt that it was ever in the condition it should’ve been, and if it was, it didn’t last long. I felt overwhelmed when I began to see how indecisive and insecure I was. I tried hard to correct the problem by rejecting the wrong thoughts that came into my mind, but they were persistent.
Many people struggle with this because they have spent years allowing their minds to wander. They've never applied the principles of discipline to their thought lives. People who can't seem to concentrate long enough to make a decision think there is something wrong with their mind. However, the inability to concentrate and make a decision can be the result of years of simply letting the mind do whatever it wants to do.
I struggled with this lack of ability to concentrate for years. When a strong decision was called for in my life, I found that I wasn't confident or disciplined enough to step out and make that choice. My mind was undisciplined and wandered from the subject at hand. I had to train my mind through discipline. It wasn’t easy, and sometimes I still have relapses. While trying to complete a project, I’ll suddenly realize that my mind has just wandered onto something else that has absolutely nothing to do with the issue at hand. I have not yet arrived at a place of perfect concentration, but at least I understand how important it is not to allow my mind to go wherever it wishes, whenever it desires.
Many times your mind can wander, even during conversation. There are times when my husband, Dave, is talking to me and I listen for a while; then all of a sudden, I realize that I haven’t heard a thing he's been saying. Why? Because I allowed my mind to wander onto something else. My body was standing there appearing to listen, but in my mind I didn't hear a thing. For many years, when this sort of thing happened, I pretended that I knew exactly what Dave was saying. Now I simply stop and say, "Can you back up and repeat that? I let my mind wander, and I didn't hear a thing you said." In this way, I’m dealing with the problem. I’m disciplining my mind to stay on track. Confronting these issues is the only way to get on the victorious side of them.
Remember, the mind is the battlefield for these daily battles. Indecision and uncertainty are just results of losing these battles, and they can cause you to think there’s something wrong with your mind. But the truth is, your mind just needs to be disciplined. Ask God to help you, and then refuse to allow your mind to think about whatever it pleases. Begin today to control your thoughts and keep your mind on what you're doing. You'll need to practice for a while; breaking old habits and forming new ones always takes time. Discipline is never easy, but it's always worth it in the end. When you win the battle for your mind, you'll be much more certain of yourself, and you'll be able to make up your mind with confidence.
Prayer request submitted.