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Thinking Clearly

August 19, 2010

We know that we’re supposed to be dependent on God for all things. It’s easy to be dependent when we’re needy. When you’re stranded on a remote rural highway with a blown tire, and the thunder is coming closer, it’s easy to feel dependent. When the monthly income is less than the monthly bills, it’s easy to feel dependent. When you’ve just been dumped by the one who you thought was THE one, it’s easy to feel dependent.

It’s hard to be dependent when we feel confident on our own. I know how to design databases, in fact I’m pretty good at it. Rarely do think to pray for assistance. Sometimes, but not often enough. I don’t need any help in my area of competence so I don’t lean on God for support and guidance. As a result, even if I’m successful in human terms, my strength has become my weakness.

But maybe those are the exact areas where being dependent takes the most faith and gives God the most glory.

If there’s one area where we tend to think we are the experts it’s thinking our own thoughts. We are experts in our own mind. Have you ever questioned your ability to think clearly? Yet every thought is the product of a finite, flawed, broken mind observing a broken and damaged world. Thoughts that are based on our experiences, our observations, and our way of thinking are bound to be imperfect. It’s amazing how easily we can run down the path of false ideas. It’s ironic, that what we perceive to be our greatest strength is actually our greatest weakness.

The way to think more clearly is to desire God’s thoughts and to become dependent upon God for the ability to think clear thoughts, by praying for God to direct our thoughts and to purify our minds and becoming dependent on Him to guide our thoughts.

Clear thinking also requires a Godly viewpoint rather than one based on our limited points of view. This means studying scripture and making a deliberate effort to place a boundary, or hedge, around truth. If scripture teaches it then it’s Truth, but I don’t accept as Truth, with a capital T, the observations I make from my finite life.

This principle, that clear thinking only come from God, is especially true when studying scripture. It’s human nature to filter what we read in scripture through our experiences when clear thinking filters our experiences and observations through what we read in scripture.

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