If you have read my book Mind Change you know how strongly I believe in the importance of replacing the wrong thoughts with the right ones. Thoughts are powerful. Words and concepts lodged in our brain make a difference. But there is a passage in the New Testament book of Hebrews that reminds us that thoughts and words are not enough.
The passage from Hebrews 4:2 reads like this: “For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.”
If you are a person seeking to have the right thoughts and want to set your mind on spiritual truth, you are quite different from the rebellious people described in this text. But there is a principle here for all of us. Even right thoughts will have no real value unless we combine them with faith.
As I point out in the book, the biblical concept of a mind change is not another form of self-help. It is not a positive-thinking philosophy. A true biblical mind change must involve locking on to some truth from God and then combining that focus with faith.
Learning to say “This is hard, but God…” may become just another effort to trick your emotions unless behind that statement is a faith—a conviction—that your God is bigger than what is hard and that you will trust him.
Wrong thinking will always lead to a bad result, but right thinking must be more than an intellectual exercise. The right thoughts must be energized with faith or else, they, too, will fall flat.