Do you register what you are feeding yourself? By “feeding” yourself I mean what you are allowing to be eaten by your eyes, ears, heart and mind. Make no mistake, what you allow into your spirit affects how you view the world, how you view yourself and how you treat yourself and others. If you allow garbage in – you will get garbage out, period. If you start making conscious choices about what you allow into your spirit, your world can be transformed. So, again, I present the question, do you register what you are feeding yourself?

That question may seem absurd but in it lies deep truth. If what we watch or hear or think did not affect us, God would not have bothered to direct us, in His Word, as follows:

Philippians 4:8 (NIV)
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.

This is a power-filled verse that is often overlooked but is actually one of the keys to living with peace and love on this earth. Whatever is true…do you seek truth? Whatever is noble…do you search for nobility? Whatever is right…do you look for rights or wrongs? Whatever is pure…do you turn your eyes to what is pure and good or are you drawn to hate and ugliness in our world?

Those may seem like oversimplified questions but they are indeed questions on which to ponder then, inspect your life for the answers. If you take some time to inspect your life against that verse, what might you find?

For example, what type of movies do you watch? Are the movies you watch uplifting or full of terror? It makes a difference, believe me! I used to love a good scary movie. There was nothing better than watching a flick with my hand half over my eyes and my body in full fright mode. My breathing would be quickened, I would be a bit nervous and I would relish the screams that emanated from me due to the “pop-out” on screen action. Then, I realized that I started to imagine and contemplate things, in regards to that scary movie, when I was far removed from it. Meaning, I was afraid of bumps in the night, etc. I had to choose to stop watching those types of movies to calm my mind. A constant diet of fright, left me in a constant state of alert and that is not how my Heavenly Father designed me to live. Now, by God’s grace, I choose to watch movies that are uplifting and leave me smiling at the end, even if it came through tears during the flick.

It is not only movies that can have that affect on our hearts and minds, it is also music, television, books and oh yes, social media. I think you would be hard pressed to find truth, nobility, purity, etc. or excellence or praiseworthiness while watching the nightly news, while clicking on click-bait stories that appear within your web browser or while scrolling though your social media feed. It only takes a second to see something that you cannot “unsee” or to hear something that you cannot “unhear” so I encourage you to be a staunch guardian of your spirit and heart.

Start to watch what you watch. Start to hear what you hear. Start to think about what you think about. I warn you, it may not be a wonderful experience for you. As you truly start to register what you are taking in through your eyes, heart, mind and spirit, you might be shocked and you will likely be moved to make different choices. Yep – you are welcome! 🙂

I admit that when I started to inspect what I was allowing into my world, I had to make changes. For starters, I had to quit watching the nightly news (insert shock here). The “Bad News” is what I have come to affectionately call it. Have you ever sat through a news program and registered what they feed you? Stories of murder, assault, fire, death, ugly politics, etc. and those stories are presented with that news station’s slant on them. Sure, they may insert a “story of hope” so you have a little something to get you out of bed the next day, but the majority of what is often shared is the ugly underbelly of our world. They often pester, on behalf of reporting the news, the people that are suffering all while pushing the TV camera into their face. It is altogether sad.

In lieu of watching the nightly news, I choose to receive my news through the view of Christ. In that I mean that I get my news updates from a Christian radio station. They report the news and filter it through the eyes of God. They report the sad events but find the positive and encouraging stories in the mix of what they are reporting and share those uplifting tidbits, not just the sad news. This news report provides me the information of what is happening while encouraging me to pray. This does not leave me depressed at the end of the report but rather leaves me with hope regardless of the news.

Speaking of Christian Radio, do you register what you hear? I listen, almost exclusively, to Christian music and I am uplifted because of it. I constantly hear songs of hope and encouragement and it has become one of my weapons in my arsenal against the enemy and the world at large. You may scoff at Christian music and think it’s all just glorified gumbo but check out what they offer. Take a 30 day challenge and listen to nothing but Christian music and see if it doesn’t lift your spirits. Don’t buy the lie that Christian music is all old fashioned hymn music. There are many Christian artists so you can find any genre music from hard rap to screaming rock and roll and everything in between. Try out Air1 or KLove or type in “Christian” in your streaming service to find some good options, and be blessed.

When you take garbage in it isn’t rocket science to make the connection that you will spew garbage out. As you spin on the negativity in the world and all the bad stuff that is happening at every moment it can leave you hopeless and depressed. It can make you start to believe there is nothing good and that God is not in control. Dear one, that would be so far from the truth, it would be a travesty to live in that prison of thought.

Instead take note of what you feed yourself and make conscious choices to focus on what is good, excellent and praiseworthy and your mind will be renewed. Then, you will be transformed by that renewing, standing apart from the spin of the world and better able to smile in all circumstances and hear what God’s wants to speak to you. Just as Paul wrote in Romans:

Romans 12:2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Make no mistake, God speaks through many avenues in our world, but we must be tuned-in to hear Him. We must quiet the noise of the world to hear His still, small voice. He won’t shout over the nightly news or over your news feed on social media. He desires your attention and, if you offer it to Him, He will come to you in moments of stillness. Make the choice to change what you take in so you can change what comes out. It’s not easy, but the effect will be long lasting and far reaching. It might even make people ask you how you can be so happy in this crazy world, then you will have opportunity to tell them about the hope you have in Christ.

Blessings and Love,