It started out as a feeling, which grew into a hope, which then turned into a quiet thought, which then turned into a quiet word, and then that word grew louder and louder until it was a battle cry.
– “The Call” Regina Spektor
Sitting in the movie theater, my eyes adjusting to the lights that had just come up at the end of the movie, I knew I loved the credit song. It didn’t hurt that it was sung by one of my favorite song artists, but I would have loved the song if it had been sung by someone else. I loved the words and the instrumentation. It was gorgeous. Breath-taking. Magical. And the lyrics of the chorus haunted me, hit me deeply, because I knew they were true.
Our thoughts are incredibly important. They lead to actions. And, apparently, actions are the fruit, or product of our hearts. But if actions are the product / fruit of our hearts, than our thoughts, are the food of our hearts.
We have many sources for our thoughts – life itself, school, movies, music, friends, parents, T.V., the list goes on.
But it is the thoughts themselves that are our heart’s food. It is our choice to focus our thoughts on what we want (or don’t want) from those movies and music. What you choose to think about from the conversations you have throughout the day, from the subjects in school you’re learning, from the TV shows you watch and the songs you listen to, affects you.
It’s kinda like a dinner buffet. At a buffet, you have many options of food to eat. And you get to choose what you want to eat, or not eat. You can choose from spaghetti or lasagna or some sketchy-looking Chinese meal, the salad, or the roast beef. Well, the world is the same way with our thoughts. You have the choice to think about stuff from movie last night, or from the book you’re (supposed to be) reading for Language, or from the conversation you had with your friend, or from the song that’s overplayed right now on the radio. It’s your choice.
But here’s the thing, just like if you chose healthy food to put in your body your body functions more along the lines of its originally intended plan, so your heart functions in a healthier manner if you feed it healthy “food”, or thoughts.
From your thoughts grow actions. Which might be why Jesus goes all strict-bun-in-a-tight-bun-steel-rimmed-glasses-ancient substitute teacher on people in Matthew. He’s rather tough when it comes to such things. He says it’s just as bad to lust after someone as to actually have sex with them. It’s just as bad to hate someone as to actually murder them.
Maybe because if you continue to think those thoughts of lust or anger, they grow, and then …there’s a chance, should you be given the opportunity … you’ll ACT out of those thoughts. And even if you don’t actually ever murder someone, or sleep with a man who’s not your husband, or say one nasty comment to your mother, those thoughts are still causing you to treat the people around you in ways that are not honoring to God, or honoring the fact that they were made in His image.
And God’s a pretty big stickler when it comes to how we treat each other. He highly stresses treating each other with love and respect. It’s a huge deal. Love God and love your neighbor. It’s incredibly important to Him – in fact, that’s how the world is supposed to know we love God – by our obedience to Him (which causes us to live differently than the rest of the world) and by how we treat others. And if your thoughts aren’t reflective of that, your actions (and words and facial expressions) won’t be either.
So, be careful what you allow your thoughts to dwell on, what you focus on. Your thoughts feed your heart. And out of your heart spring actions. Your thoughts have a great deal of power over how you treat others, so be careful what you think.