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-Phil. 4:8
Here is a great list, a Divine list. Here is a presentation of alternatives (options). Here is a clear message that declares “YOU DON’T HAVE TO FIT INTO THE MOLD OF WRONG THINKING THAT PLAGUES THE WORLD THAT YOU LIVE IN!”
To be direct, your thoughts do not have to be angry, sinful, anxious, discouraged, or any other kind that could be categorized as wrong thinking. There is no rule that requires you to think such thoughts. You have no obligation to them.
However, from the text it is obvious that believers should think about things that are true, things that are honest, things that are just, etc. In essence, believers have an obligation to right thinking. This is easier said (or “read”) than done. BUT IT CAN BE DONE! One does not have to be a slave to their thoughts! Believers should and can have victory in their mind!
Of course, the prevailing question is “how?” There are two primary ways in which believers can think right.
First, right thinking happens due to Divine empowerment. When you initially put your faith in Him and submit your life to Him, He helps you in immense ways. One of the areas that He specifically works in is your mind. Your thinking changes. It is He Who helps you win the battle over wrong thinking! He can fortify your mind against negative, evil thoughts. He can enable your mind to focus on positive, righteous thoughts.
Second, right thinking happens due to diligent effort. Though you ultimately must have God’s help to think right, you must also get involved yourself. Right thinking requires personal effort! You must discipline your mind to avoid thoughts that you know are evil or wrong (and you do know when they are). You must also work hard to fill your mind with thoughts that are positive and right. By the way, one of the best, practical ways to do this is to saturate your mind with the Word of God (Ps. 1:2, 119:11, 105).
Thinking right is a challenge! The mind is hard to master, but master it you must! Be determined to follow Paul’s counsel in Philippians! Ask for Divine empowerment. Make diligent effort. Think right!