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Joyce Meyer - Power Thoughts

Joyce Meyer - Power Thoughts
TOPICS: Thoughts
Joyce Meyer - Power Thoughts

Well, thank you for joining me today on "Enjoying Everyday Life". The Word of God helps us do just that. It helps us enjoy every day of our life. I spent many years, even as a Christian, not enjoying my life because I really didn't know the word. I wasn't really applying the word to my life. And in order to enjoy life, we have to learn to do things God's way, not our way. The last couple of days I've been talking to you about the mind, the power of our thoughts. And how our thoughts determine our words, and they affect our emotions, they affect our actions.

Matter of fact, I wanna read you this. "Whatever you hold in your mind will tend to occur in your life. If you continue to believe, as you have always believed, you will continue to be as you have always been. If you continue to do what you have always done, you will continue to get what you have always gotten. If you want different results in your life, or your work, all you have to do is change your mind". And it's by anonymous so, I don't know who it was, but I think it's good. In other words, so many people want change. You pray for change, and I don't know how we think change is gonna come, but it's not just gonna be magically. God's gonna zap us and everything is gonna change. There's always something that God needs to show us, that we need to do, and he will give us the grace to do it. God doesn't do everything for us. He does things through us. We cannot do anything without him, but he won't do our part. I always like to say that we're partners with God. He has a part, and we have a part. I can't do his part and he won't do my part.

Now, several years ago, I wrote a book called "Power Thoughts". And it's a book about teaching people how to think things on purpose. And that's really what we've been talking about the last couple of days, how you can think things on purpose. You don't have to think just whatever falls in your head. You can think things on purpose. And you should be thinking according to what you want to have in your life, not according to what you do have. Maybe you don't like your circumstances right now, so you just think about 'em all the time and talk about 'em all the time. Think about 'em and talk about 'em, think about 'em and talk about 'em. Well, you know what? They're gonna stay just exactly the way they are. But if you want your circumstances to change, you pray and ask God to do a work in your life in that area, and then you renew your mind in that area and you change the way you talk.

And so, in this book, we have a program that we want people to follow. And of course, we'll offer the book at the end of the program. But it's a program. There's 12, what we call, "Power Thoughts," in here. Twelve thoughts that can be life changing. And we encourage people to read the book all the way through, and then go back and take the first power thought and meditate on that for one week. Put some signs up around your house, just paper signs with large print on 'em with that power thought on it. Anything to keep it in front of you, to keep you remembering it. And the longer you think about something, the more you will retain it.

And then, next week you'll go to the next power thought. And so, you'll have 12 weeks. And then, we recommend that the next three months you go back and start all over. So, by the end of a year you will have gone through the book four times. And you'll begin to retain, not just remember something for five minutes, but they will become part of you. The more you meditate on the word and the more you think about something, the more it becomes part of you, and it becomes a new habit. So, you don't even have to really make an effort to do it, it just is that way.

And so, the first power thought that we're gonna talk about is one that I think is important called "I can do whatever I need to do in life through Christ". We have so many people that always say, "I can't, I can't". And one of the big excuses they give is it's too hard. "I can't because it's too hard". Well, God says in Philippians 4:13, "I have strength for all things in Christ who empowers me. [I'm ready for anything and equal to anything through him who infuses inner strength into me: I'm self-sufficient in Christ's sufficiency]". Philippians 4:13. So, think about that. We like to say miracles come in cans, not in cant's. Let's just get the "I can't" out of our vocabulary and begin to say that "I can do all things through Christ who is my strength".

You know, when you have a challenge come up that you're not expecting, don't just say, "I can't stand this, I can't do this, I can't put up with this, I can't deal with this anymore". Because the Bible says that "God will never allow more to come on you than what you can bear. But with every temptation, he also provides the way out". And so, whatever comes your way, you can deal with it. Otherwise, it wouldn't be coming your way. God's not gonna allow more to come on you than what you can bear. So, the first thing you need to do when you have a challenging situation come up in life, the first thing you need to do is pray, "God, I can't do this by myself, but I know through you, I can do it because your word says, 'i can do all things through Christ who is my strength'".

Very important. Here's a story I'd like to read you, that I think you'll get some joy out of and you'll learn a lesson. Called "Rock your box". "A long time ago, before some of the medical advances available to us today, a little boy was crippled, and the doctor said that there was nothing that they could do for him. So, the boy's mother took an orange crate, put the boy in it, tied a rope around it, tied the rope around her waist, and she literally pulled him with her everywhere she went". So, she kept him with her all the time. "And after a while, he developed, what to her, was an annoying habit. He began to rock the box. And he would rock the box, and rock the box. And sometimes, he would rock it so hard that he would actually fall out of it, and she'd have to put him back in it. And no matter what she did, she could not get him to stop rocking that box.

After a while, the mother became very annoyed with it, but the boy just would not stop. Well, he rocked his box so hard that he finally fell out of it, got up and learned how to walk, and had a great life". Well, you know what? Maybe some of you need to rock your box. Maybe you've just been putting up with stuff and putting up with stuff, and you need to get a little aggressive and say, "I can do this through Christ, who is my strength". That little boy did something that the doctors could not even believe that could happen. You know, a doctor may tell you that something can't happen, but all things are possible with God. We don't wanna listen to what the world says all the time. We wanna see what God says about things.

So, if you're stuck someplace, just rock your box until you rock yourself free. Don't allow yourself to think thoughts like, "I just cannot take anymore". "If this happens to me one more time, I'm gonna quit and give up". Don't prophesy your future like that. The words that you say now, will be the life that you live tomorrow. It's very important to say what you want, not to say what you have. In Mark 11, the Bible says, "If you speak to the mountain and tell it to move, it'll move". Now, that's an example. Of course, we're not talking about a physical mountain, but the mountains of problems in your life. It says actually, talk to your problems. Well, what we do is we talk about our problems instead of talking to them. And we need to say what the Word of God says. I spent the last two days talking to you about thoughts. Well, whatever's in your thoughts comes out of your mouth.

Matthew 12 says, "Out of the heart, the mouth speaks". "If things don't change soon, I'm gonna give up". Don't talk like that. Get rid of your excuses. When things come along that are challenging for us or new that we've never done, or even things that we don't wanna do, we end up just making excuses. Well, here's a few excuses we make. "Well, this is just gonna be too hard". That's probably the top one. "It's just too hard". Well, you know what I believe? I believe we're anointed for hard things. I believe that as God's children, we can do things through him that nobody else could do. Another excuse is, "I don't have enough time". "I hadn't planned on that today".

Well, you know what? There's all kinds of things that came up in Jesus' life that he didn't have planned. We need to have the ability to adapt and adjust and be ready for anything, and equal to anything, no matter what it is. I have one daughter that's very pliable. She's just like, I'll call her and say, "What are you doing today"? And she'll say, "What do you need me to do"? She works for me and helps me with a lot of things. And I'm so, so grateful for her flexibility in life. My husband is also very flexible, and that's very good for me because I've not been a very flexible person. I'm the kind of person that makes my mind up the way I want something to be. And I'm not always real happy if it don't turn out that way.

Now, thank God through his word and the help of the Holy Spirit, I'm changing. I've changed a lot. I still got a little ways to go, but I'll continue to change. "I didn't plan on that today". "Well, I don't see how that would ever work," that's another excuse. "Well, I just don't feel like it". Boy, that's a big one. "I have too many personal problems of my own to get involved in that right now". "I don't know how to do that". "I've never done that, and I don't even know anybody that's ever done it". Well, who says that you can't be the first one to do something? You know, when God called me to teach the word 45 years ago, there were very few women that were teaching the word. And that was one of the first things that people told me. "Well, women don't do that". Well, why did God call me to do it, if women don't do that?

You know, I told God, "Well, women don't do that". And he reminded me that he knew what my sex was when he called me. And I have been doing it for 45 years, so, I guess the people were wrong and God was right. God uses whoever he wants to. He even used a donkey to speak to a prophet. All we have to do is be available. To be honest, you don't even have to have that much ability. You just say, "God, here I am, send me. I wanna do whatever you want me to do in life". "I don't have anybody to help me". Boy, that's a big one. "I'm afraid". Oh, that's another big one. That's another big one, "I'm afraid". Well, who says you can't do it afraid? You know, the word fear means to run or to take flight. It doesn't talk about being nervous or shaking or sweating or trembling. Fear means to run away from. And courage is actually to take action in the face of fear.

Just because you feel fear doesn't mean that you can't do what God is asking you to do. There've been many times when I have felt afraid, and I just dig in a little bit deeper, and I go ahead and do what God is asking me to do. And it's amazing what you can do if you won't let fear stop you. And that's exactly the whole purpose of fear is to stop you and to keep you from going forward in life. The second power thought, we'll talk about is "God loves me unconditionally". Man, if you know how much God loves you, it gives you confidence. It gives you courage. It adds joy to your life. God loves you unconditionally. The Bible says in Ephesians that "Even as [in his love] he chose us [actually picked us out for himself to be his] in Christ".

God purposely picked you out. He didn't get stuck with you on purpose. I mean, he didn't get stuck with you, and just couldn't do anything about it. God picked you out for himself and he has a great plan for your life. Now, there are some people that need to hear what I'm saying today. God has got a great plan for your life. You say, "Well, Joyce, I believed that at one time. But I've made so many mistakes and done so many wrong things and I've just given up. I don't believe that I'll ever have a good life. I've made too many mistakes". Well, you know what? You're believing the lies of Satan. You're not believing what the word says. Because the Bible says that, "When we sin, if we will admit our sins and confess our sins, that he will not only forgive us, but he will remove our sins as far as the east is from the west". And get this, "He will remember them no more".

Wow, that's so good. So, when you pray and ask God to forgive you for something, he forgives you and he forgets it. So, if you go back the next day, talking to him about it, you're talking to him about something he doesn't even remember anymore. God loves you unconditionally. Now, that doesn't mean that we wanna just see how many stupid things we can do on purpose, but we need to know that God loves us. One winter's night there was a woman that was brought before a judge who had stolen a loaf of bread because her children were starving, and the owner of the store wanted to press charges against her. And so, the judge fined her $10. But then, he got out a $10 bill and paid her fine. And then, he told everybody in the room he was gonna fine them $0.50 each for living in a town and not trying to change it, where a woman had to steal a loaf of bread to feed her children.

And I think the total of what he fined them came to $47 and something. And he turned around and gave that money to the woman. Well, you might say that Jesus has paid our fine. She got to go completely free. The charges against her were dropped. And, you know when Jesus died for us, the charges against us were dropped. He's paid our fine. He's opened the prison doors, and all we need to do now is to walk out. Jesus has paid for your sins. He has redeemed you. He's bought you back from the enemy. You know what? Your account is balanced. You don't owe God anything. Your account is in balance. Everything is good. The next power thought is "I will not live in fear". Don't go around saying, "I'm afraid of this". "I'm afraid of that". "I'm afraid, I'm afraid, I'm afraid". You say, "Well, Joyce, I am afraid". Well, stop saying that. Start saying, "I will not fear".

If you say something long enough, you'll start believing it. And the minute you start believing it, it's gonna start happening in your life. One of the ways that we learn how to believe the Word of God is by speaking the Word of God. Speak it out loud. You believe more of what you hear than you do anybody else. And so, speak the word. "I will not live in fear". 2 Timothy 1:7, "For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and a sound mind". The Amplified Bible says that a sound mind is "A calm and a well-balanced mind and a mind of discipline and self-control". Isn't that good? If you have a mind of discipline and self-control, that means when wrong thoughts come into your mind, you can discipline yourself and cast them down and choose to think on something that's gonna benefit you in your life.

There are thoughts that are full of death and thoughts that are full of life. And you can actually minister life to yourself by thinking good thoughts and you can also minister life to yourself and other people by speaking good things. Proverbs 18:21 says, "The power of life and death is in the tongue, and those who indulge it must eat the fruit of it, rather [for life or death]". Wow. I guess that's where the statement comes from: you're gonna eat those words. Because literally, we do feed on our own words. This has been such an important part of my life, learning how to speak the Word of God.

Many, many years ago, before I ever heard anybody teach on the power of the tongue, I was such a negative person. I'd grown up in negative circumstances. I'd been abused and mistreated. And married the first guy that came along, cuz I thought nobody would ever want me. And he abused me for another five years running around with other women, and wouldn't work, and never supported us. And so, by the time I was 23 years old, I actually could not remember ever, ever being happy. And I'd had so many disappointing things happen in my life that I was just very negative. I actually, came to the point of thinking that if I didn't believe for anything good, if I didn't expect anything good to happen, then I wouldn't be disappointed when it didn't.

So, I was already convinced that bad things were gonna happen before they ever happened. That's called "Evil forebodings" in the Bible. All of our days are made anxious and miserable by evil forebodings, by expecting something evil. We need to believe that good things are gonna happen. Not that bad things are gonna happen. You say, "Well, Joyce, what if I believe something good's gonna happen and then it doesn't"? Well, believe it again the next day. And so, God began to deal with me that I needed to stop being so negative. And I felt like that I was really trying hard to be positive. I mean I was working at it, with the Lord. I was trying to be positive. And after about six months, I didn't feel like I'd seen any change in my life.

And so, I was complaining to the Lord, and I said, "Well, I've been being real positive and I have not been saying negative things, and nothing has changed". And man, God changed my life with one sentence. He said, "You haven't been saying negative things, but you haven't been saying anything positive either". And that was when I learned, all by myself, with just me and God, the power of positive confessions. And I'm not talking about a "Name it, claim it" gospel that a lot of people talk about where you can just say, "Well, I'm gonna be a millionaire," and then, you're gonna be a millionaire. I'm talking about confessing the Word of God. And it's all throughout the Bible. Part of meditating on the word is to mutter it under your breath softly.

So, we need to speak the Word of God. So, don't go around saying, "I'm afraid, I'm afraid, I'm afraid". Say, "I will not fear". God created you for adventure. And if you're afraid, you're never gonna have any adventures in your life. Your life will be dull and boring. If you just do the same old thing all the time, you're gonna be bored with life. Learn how to catch it early. When fearful thoughts come into your life, learn how to catch them early. In the United States, there's all kinds of over-the-counter medication that you can get. And at the first indication of a cold, you can go to the drugstore, and you can get this, that, or something else. And it supposedly, will help get rid of the cold right away. Like for me, if I start to get a cold, I have some natural things that I take.

And one of the things I'll take is a lot of vitamin c to help get rid of that cold. Well, we need to do the same thing with fear. We need to catch it early. And when fear tries to come into your life, you need to catch it, and say, "Nope, I caught you. The devil's lying to me, and I will not fear. What can man do unto me, if God is for me, who can be against me"? You need to study a lot of these scriptures about not fearing. "I will fear no evil," king David said. "I will," I think he was making a declaration of what he would do. "I will not fear. If God be for me, who can be against me"? "I can do all things through Christ, who is my strength". "God loves me unconditionally, and I will not fear".

Surely, you can already begin to see what a difference this would make in your life. And this is not just something that you do one time, but you spend a little bit of time every day confessing the word, and saying the things that God says, that you don't have in your life yet, but you want to have and you're prophesying your own future. You will have tomorrow, what you say today. Now, I'm not saying that if you say something today, tomorrow you're going to get it. But I'm making a point that if you start saying positive things somewhere in your future, those positive things will begin to happen. Do it afraid, if you have to do it afraid. Don't let the devil keep stealing from you. One final one, and this is four, and there's 12 in here. This one is "I am difficult to offend". Wow.

So many people are offended. And the word offense comes from a Greek word skandalon: S-K-A-N-D-A-L-O-N. And the skandalon was the part of the trap that the bait hung on to lure the little animal victims into the trap. When they were trying to trap animals, they put bait on the skandalon, and that word is translated offense.

And so, John Bevere wrote a powerful book called "The Bait of Satan". And offenses are the bait that Satan uses to try to draw us in to full blown cases of bitterness, resentment, and unforgiveness. I don't think we can even begin to imagine how much the devil steals from us through unforgiveness. One man said that people open more doors for the devil through unforgiveness than anything else. We need to learn how to not be so easily offended. And one of the ways that you can do that is by believing the best of people rather than believing the worst about them. That's helped me so much to just believe the best. Instead of thinking, "You did that on purpose," I think, "You probably didn't even know you did it".

You know, sometimes, you're just having a rough day, and somebody can say something, and it might really bother you today, and at another time, in your life, when you feel differently, that might not bother you at all. The Bible says, in Matthew 24, that "In the last days many will be offended, and the love of the great body will grow cold because of the multiplied wickedness and lawlessness in the land".

And I would say that, that's true. I think most of us believe we're living in the last days. And I know every generation has thought that. But one thing's for sure, we're further along than we've ever been. And so many people today, are angry. It really concerns me. There are so many people that are mad at somebody else, and they refuse to forgive. Well, why don't you start saying, "I am difficult to offend". Be kind to people, be good to people. And if somebody hurts your feelings, just think to yourself, "I don't believe they meant to do that and I'm gonna forgive 'em".
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