The days after camp, even as an adult, were prime times for Satan to try his hand at causing you to choose some “Stinkin’ thinkin’” instead of thoughts that God says are true. Camp is one of those rare times when you don’t have electronics to deal with, your primary goal is to listen and respond to what God is telling and teaching you, and you are surrounded by peers and adults who encourage you along the way. Then it is back to reality. Even as recently as last week, I had to confront some of those thoughts and remember that “The thief (Satan) comes only to steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10a) what Jesus came to give.
Recognizing Satan’s work is the first step to stopping it. I notice it when:
* Comparing myself to others.
* Second guessing if what I am doing is the right thing to do.
* Focusing thoughts on me instead of others.
* Reading into situations and making assumptions.
* Reminding myself of past mistakes and failures.
* Forgetting that it’s availability that God wants and that he’ll take care of the ability and details.
Instead, I need to take to heart the last part of John 10:10 when Jesus says, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
To get rid of the “Stinkin’ thinkin’” it is important to remember that:
* God keeps watch over me.
“Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings.”
* God has provided a way for me to stay close to him and resist the lies and destruction of the enemy.
“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
* God is the greatest and he gives me strength to overcome.
“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”
I John 4:4
* When I keep my focus on Jesus, it helps me keep things in perspective.
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Colossians 3:1, 2
* There are specific things to think about to have the right kind of thoughts, actions, and reactions.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
All the time, not just when I’m at camp or retreats, I need to be intentional about spending time in prayer, reading the Bible, listening to and obeying what God asks me to do, and surrounding myself with people who challenge and encourage me to be like Jesus.