by Rick Warren — March 29, 2023
From Resetting My Life
“What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?”
James 4:1 (NIV)
Every second of your life, there’s a battle in your brain. There’s a mental battle going on right now! It could be between right and wrong, between what’s easy and what’s hard, or what’s healthy and what’s unhealthy.
All your negative emotions—stress, depression, anxiety, loneliness, fear, jealousy—are a mental struggle. All of your internal conflicts start in your mind. In fact, so do all of your external conflicts.
James 4:1 says, “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?” (NIV) That battle going on inside your mind between conflicting desires can continue even when you are sleeping, as you experience restless sleep and bad dreams. It’s a battle that rages 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
This battle in your brain is constant and intense because your mind is your greatest asset. You are your thoughts, your will, your emotions, your soul. Without your brain, you’re not you.
The Bible says in Romans 7:22-23, “I love to do God’s will so far as my new nature is concerned; but there is something else deep within me . . . that is at war with my mind and wins the fight and makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. In my mind I want to be God’s willing servant, but instead I find myself still enslaved to sin” (TLB).
If you follow Jesus, then God’s Spirit is in you. It’s part of your new nature. That means that Satan can’t control your mind, but he can make suggestions.
The only influence Satan has in the life of a Christian is that he can put thoughts in your mind. He can get your attention—and that’s a pretty big deal. Why? Because whatever gets your attention gets you. Once he puts a thought in your mind, you have to decide if you’re going to accept or reject his suggestion.
There’s a lot going on in your brain right now, and all of it will eventually show up in your attitude and your actions.
Ask God to help you choose right over wrong, healthy over destructive, and his truth over Satan’s lies. He is ready to give you the power you need through the Holy Spirit!