A Much-Needed Redesign Between the Ears
Y'all, all this talk about redesign has given me the bug for all things home.
...cleaning out cabinets and drawers and closets!
That's how it started for me and then evolved into a new lamp, then a new ottoman which of course needed a new throw. A little repurposing decor here and there, and wall-ah! My little home has a fresh, new look!
And I think this process is on purpose. Every good redesign starts with cleaning out, especially when it comes to our thoughts and our minds.
It's not enough to just remove the old, we must replace those thoughts with truth!
To help us understand this a bit more, I'm so honored to introduce you to my new friend, Jennifer Turner, as she shares a hard-won victory over negative thoughts with us.
She lives with her husband and three adorable children in the Charlotte, NC area (just look at those sweet smiles). One of her greatest passions is speaking and writing about the goodness of God, His abundant grace and His redemptive love. Look for her on Instagram @jenniferturner.622 to have some truth and encouragement added to your daily feeds!
Confession #1: Sometimes when I need to clean my house, I watch the show “Hoarders” for inspiration. It makes me not only want to deep clean but also reorganize and rearrange everything so my house will look tidier than ever before.
Watching “Hoarders” is so effective because I’m often grossed out seeing all the trash piled up in someone’s home. The bugs and rodents that come with such unhealthy living conditions freak me out. By the time I’m five minutes into the show, I’m already tossing papers that have piled up and putting away the items I’ve “been meaning to” put away for a few days.
Not too long ago, my mind was like a “Hoarders” episode. Crowded with lies from the enemy and past trauma, I became convinced I was DEFECTIVE. And, if defective, beyond repair. Unfixable. Useless. Worthless. Hopeless.
I knew my mind needed a massive overhaul. A redesign of sorts. But I didn’t know where to turn.
Confession #2: Sometimes a room or closet can be in such disarray that I can’t even figure out what to tackle first. I stand frozen, just staring at the chaos.
That is how it was with my mind.
Therapy helped some. As did self-help books and conversations with my mentors. Yet, I could not find anything to refute my belief that I was defective. At least nothing that truly sunk in.
Confession #3: Sometimes when I want to reorganize an area of my house, I spend hours on Pinterest and write a lengthy to-do list, but I fail to do the one thing that’s going to help me the most: declutter.
It was no different with my brain. Instead of emptying it of the lies that screamed, “Defective!” I was looking at other ways I could rearrange my “space.”
Finally, what should have been my first resort became my last resort — I turned to the Bible. I read so many scriptures that helped a little bit, and then, I read this:
Don’t you yourselves know that you are God’s temple and that the Spirit of God lives in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is holy, and THAT IS WHAT YOU ARE. - 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 (emphasis added)
Struck by the words “that is what you are,” I began to dig deeper into definitions.
We are God’s temple...
Temple - A place in which God’s presence specially resides. A place devoted to worship.
Worship - Originates from within. Motivated by love for God and gratitude for all He has done.
So, as children of God, we are dwelling places where the Spirit of God resides. Because of this, we can be devoted to sincere gratitude and praise for all He has done.
Part of our temple is our outer bodies, but they’re just the covering. The real beauty lies within. God doesn’t look at the outward appearance, “but God looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7).
The best way to care for our heart is not through eating healthy and exercising (though these are important) but through the daily discipline of seeking Him. We can’t have a heart like His if we don’t first KNOW His heart.
We must daily eat from His Word, worship Him and commune with Him so we can love LIKE Him.
In 1 Corinthians, Paul doesn’t stop at telling us we are God’s temple. There’s even more. Because Christ is within us, our temple is Holy. That IS what we are.
What does holy mean? “Whole. Entire. Free. Pure. Complete.”
As if that is not enough reason to rejoice, I looked up the definition of whole. Right in black and white, I saw these words: NOT DEFECTIVE.
This is the truth I’d been searching for, and the truth that allowed me to toss out the lies. I am NOT DEFECTIVE, because He is within me. You are not defective, because He is within you. We are complete in Him. The wiring of our brain may be a mess at times, but it’s not a mess God can’t handle.
If we’re not defective, we’re free. Free to be who God wants us to be. Free to worship Him unencumbered by our flaws. Free to love Him and others without limit. Free to praise Him even in our imperfections.
May we all make it our goal today to operate from this truth. May we see ourselves the way God sees us — as His masterpiece.
We can distract ourselves,
do some yoga,
go for a run,
read all the self-help books,
and do everything to clear our minds.
But if we don't also replace the negative with truth, the downward spiral only continues.
As Jennifer has so beautifully reminded us, let's find strength in what God's Word says about us. Let's find joy as we experience the Spirit of God dwelling in us. Peace guards our minds and we are able to rest as we grow in devotion to sincere gratitude and praise for all He has done.
The good life, well it starts with a good day. Then another. Then another. Let's choose to live #TheGoodDay one day at a time.
I love hearing from you, so go ahead. Leave a comment. Be brave. Maybe your comment will speak life into someone else!
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