Christy has a book called Hearing God. It was lying around, and I happened to flip it open to scan and see what it was, and this is the passage I came to. Relevant to my ponderings lately, don't you think...?
How does the devil get his will done? How does he slander a person? Murder someone? I have never known of a person slandered or murdered directly bySatan. But there are many people harmed by other people after the devil has put evil ideas in their minds.
The first step of the spiritual world's interaction with the physical world is most often a thought placed in the mind of an individual. It is not usually by audible sounds that God speaks to us these days. The Lordcommunicates in our thought life and through the Holy Spirit's interpreting the Scriptures to us, as we have seen in the introduction to this book.
How important, then, it is for us to understand certain basic things about our thought life. This is natural and scriptural, for God lives inside our minds and hearts - in our thought world.
The Importance of Our Thought Life
My attitude at any given moment is determined by my thoughts. If I am afraid, loving, anxious, peaceful or filled by any other such feeling, it is all dependent on my thoughts. So also is it with everyone.
1. Our thoughts produce our attitudes. It is possible to be fearful when there is nothing to be afraid of, simply because you are thinking wrong thoughts. On the other hand, it is possible to be at peace when there is something you should be afraid of, but you are not aware of the danger.
2. Our thoughts precede our attitudes, whether or not there is any reality to those thoughts. Before we do anything, we think. Before we act, we think. It might be just a split-second reaction, or there may be a longtime between thoughts and actions. But there is always a thought process prior to an action.
The enemy's attack consists basically in placing untrue thoughts in our mind and calling them "truth," so that we will live according to his purpose and desire. The only power the Evil One has over us is through our thoughts.
Satan told Eve she would find life in eating the forbidden fruit. She believed him and ate and found death instead (Gen. 3). He did not force her hand to pick the fruit nor pry open her mouth to eat it. He just put the idea in her head.
The "big lie" that he uses to hold most Americans captive is that life consists of the abundance of the material things that a man has (cf. Luke 12:15). Believing this, many people act on the assumption that possessions will make them happy. Sometimes they do not discover the truth in a whole lifetime and so live all their days by Satan's lie.
We will inevitably become what we think about all day. This is a commonly accepted psychological truth, and the writer of Hebrews states its logical conclusion unequivocably: "Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith (Heb. 12:2a).
And Paul adds: "But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit" (2 Cor. 3:18).
The key is that as we are looking at Jesus, the Lord, he is working a step-by-step transformation in us. If we want to be like him, it is imperative that we understand our thought life and learn to control it.
Controlling Our Thought Life
Is it possible to get all the air out of a glass?
Yes, it's easy. Just fill the glass with water.
Is it possible to control our thought life, to control what we think? Can we ever bring "every thought captive" to Christ? (2 Cor. 10:5).
Yes, that's easy, too, if we fill our minds with different thoughts. The principle is the same as filling a glass with water to "control" - get ridof-the air.