Here we are at the last few words in our study of Philippians 4:8. This study came about all because one afternoon I was sitting home alone in the quiet of the day and my thoughts were running wild, and I desperately needed help!
I'm definitely going through a refresher course which is reminding me that I AM the one solely responsible for what I dwell upon.
I am the ONLY one who can choose what I think.
WHAT I THINK
Our thoughts and what we dwell upon seep out into our actions, moods, attitudes, choices, words, facial expressions, responses to others, and most importantly, our personal walk with our Saviour.
As I've dug deeper into Philippians 4:8 and written these posts, I've been challenged to put into practice what I've learned and what I've shared with all of you!
Some days, by the grace of God, the victory was won.
But unfortunately, other days I completely succumbed, and my stinkin' thinkin' got the better of me, and in doing so, the Lord allowed me to see just how much my stinkin' thinkin' affects my words, attitudes, and all those around me. It wasn't pretty.
Okay on to the last two words we will be studying from Philippines 4:8
"Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."
Moral goodness; moral excellency. Obedience to truth; integrity; valor; dignity; courage; worthiness.
"And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge."
II Peter 1:5
I found a very interesting comment on the word virtue in the commentary, "Thru The Bible With J. Vernon McGee".
"How the world needs believers who have the courage and virtue to stand for that which is right and to stand up and be counted for God in this day."
We see from the above-mentioned verse that virtue and living a virtuous life is far above worldly wealth.
The only way to think upon virtuous things is to not allow our minds to dwell upon the evil of this world. We cannot think about evil and expect to live virtuously before God.
As believers we can never fully escape all of the negative influences, but we can make sure we are doing our part.
So what are some ways to keep the evil out and keep the virtuous thoughts flowing in our minds?
- Watch what you watch!
It seems as if Hollywood cannot produce a television show or movie, even a G rated show or movie, without sneaking in some kind of sexual innuendo or using the Lord's name in vain which usually just hits you out of the blue!
However, that's not really what I'm talking about. I'm speaking more of the shows and movies you know beforehand, that as a believer, you have no business letting your eyes see or your ears hear!
- Take your testimony seriously!
I'm not saying as believers we walk around with our nose so high in the air it could keep the rain off us!
I'm also not saying we need or should be nasty or ignore our unsaved family members, friends or co-workers. No, not at all. We need to show them the love of Christ.
But we certainly don't need to laugh at their off-color jokes, order an alcoholic beverage at lunch or dinner just because everyone else does, or feel ashamed to bow our head in prayer before we eat.
When others know we name the name of Christ, in other words, that we are a Christian, they are watching us.
We are constantly on display.
The world is looking to see if there REALLY is a difference between a believer in Christ and a non-believer.
- Listen to what you listen to!
Music is super powerful.
I still have lyrics of Rock 'n' roll songs stuck in my head from way back in the 1970's and 80's! All I need to do is hear the song begin to play, and I can start singing it and never miss a beat!
First of all, I would highly suggest you listen to music that you can actually understand what's being sung!
As a believer, choose music which glorifies and magnifies the Lord.
Commendation bestowed on a person for his worthy actions. Glorifying or extolling. The offering of grateful homage in words or song, as an act of worship: a hymn of praise to God.
"And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD."
So what thoughts can we think about that would be praise worthy?
we even begin?
If you know Jesus as your personal Saviour, that right there is the VERY BEST PRAISE EVER!
And if you know Jesus as your Saviour, then you also know that this life is not all there is. Heaven is real! Praise the Lord!
I'll share some of my personal praises.
Sleeping through the night is a satisfied praise worthy thought.
Having dinner ready for my hardworking husband is a happy praise worthy thought!
Being 110% sure I will go to heaven one day because of my personal faith and trust in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus is a hallelujah praise worthy thought!
Thinking of the joy, fun and laughter I had recently when my granddaughter was at our house to visit is a sweet praise worthy thought!
Being able to be IN church and not just watching by way of the live stream is a very grateful praise worthy thought!
Living in America and being able to enjoy all the freedoms which we have is a thankful praise worthy thought
Being able to pick up God's Word and understand what I'm reading because God's Spirit is teaching me is a wonderful praise worthy thought.
Knowing others are praying for me and the blessed opportunity that I have to pray for others is a joyous praise worthy thought.
Going on a truck date with my man, or even better, when I'm able to go into a restaurant is a fun praise worthy thought!
Being in the comforts of my own home while feeling ill is a very contented praise worthy thought.
Having a husband who loves me as much as mine loves me is a lovely praise worthy thought!
Being able to talk to Jesus all day long and know He hears me is a blessed praise worthy thought!
So what would be on your praise worthy thought list?
And now for the last four words of the verse.
The part that we must put into action to make Philippians 4:8 REAL in our lives.
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May God Bless You,