Give a radio. give hope.

Testing Positive - The Crosswalk Devotional - August 8

The Crosswalk Devotional

Testing Positive
 
By Annie Yorty

"We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ" (2 Corinthians 10:5 ESV).

“Elizabeth tested positive for Covid. Were you around her at all?” Worry tinged my friend’s voice. I had met Elizabeth at the three-day conference that just ended. “Yeah, I sat at lunch with her one day.” My brain automatically calculated my proximity and amount of time spent with Elizabeth. Did I hug her?

Hundreds of people attended the same event where I sat with Elizabeth for lunch. In the week after it concluded, social media messaging flurried with the same question: 

Did you test positive?

We all felt relieved when we could answer “no.”

Shouldn’t Christians be asking themselves the same question? If there were a test kit for attitudes, would a red stripe reveal that you are positive? What does it mean to be positive?

Positive thinking gurus would say it’s all about affirmative thoughts and self-talk. Visualize yourself winning, and you’ll win. Verbalize that you’ll have enough finances for your needs, and you’ll be rolling in money. Everything turns out okay if you think it will.

A kernel of truth may underlie this belief about the importance of thoughts, but the positive thinking solution always falls short. It depends on man’s foolish thinking and desires rather than on the perfect mind and will of Christ.

A fake smile plastered on your face covering the pain and ugliness below the surface never produces true and lasting positivity. True and lasting positivity flows from a transformed mind, manifesting in words and actions that please God. 

"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect" (Romans 12:2 ESV).

If we could peek into the mind of Christ, we would see that Jesus never glossed over the sin and suffering that demanded He sacrifice His body on a cross to save us. He acknowledged the whole, sordid truth. Yet He remained positive because He knew the future joy salvation would bring (Hebrews 12:2).

We can exhibit a positive attitude by following Jesus’ example. In His fully human state, Jesus was tempted by ideas that oppose His Father God. In every instance of temptation, He battled its lure with God’s Word.

Likewise, we must pinpoint every thought that runs contrary to God’s will and capture it to conform it to the truth found in the Bible. Running our thoughts through the filter of God’s Word strains out lies and any desire against God.

Like Jesus, we can trust God’s goodness. It’s not because we believe He’ll make our lives rainbows and lollipops. Indeed, we all face struggles, pain, and disappointment. But God commits to helping you and staying with you through any situation. With Him by your side, there is nothing to fear (Hebrews 13:6).

Freedom from fear produces the power to test positive by kicking two positivity killers out of our minds. How often has worry darkened your thoughts?

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God" (Philippians 4:6 ESV).

What about bitterness?

"Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you" (Ephesians 4:31-32 ESV).

Some believe a good God would never allow a bad thing to happen. But in a sin-stained world, people make sinful choices with terrible results. If we misunderstand God’s character, we’ll be overrun by worry and bitterness. God promises to be with you and use every difficulty for a good purpose in your life (Romans 8:28). God’s sovereign control over this world guarantees ultimate good for each of His children.

So, my friends, do you test positive? And is your positivity contagious? We all know how quickly a virus can spread from person to person. In the same way, do we disperse our belief in God’s goodness to everyone we meet? Can we contact trace our positivity?

Intersecting Faith and Life:
What worries and bitterness might be festering in a corner of your heart, destroying your positivity? Can you find any additional Scripture references to help you understand the mind of Christ?

Further Reading:
Philippians 4:4-9
5 Ways to Access the Mind of Christ in the Daily Grind

Photo credit: Unsplash/Matthew Hamilton

Writer Annie YortyAnnie Yorty uses her writing and speaking to encourage others to perceive God’s person, presence, provision, and purpose in the unexpected twists and turns of life. Married to her high school sweetheart and living in Pennsylvania, she mothers a teen, two adult children (one with intellectual disabilities), and a furry beast labradoodle. Please connect with her at http://annieyorty.com/Facebook, and Instagram.

Check out fantastic resources on Faith, Family, and Fun at Crosswalk.com

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