I think, Therefore I am
“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.”1
The mind is a powerful tool; able to think both great and terrible things. The French philosopher, Rene Descartes, is famous for his phrase, “Je pense, donc je suis”, or better known in English, “I think, therefore I am”. This statement has been used and repeated for centuries and has served as proof of the reality of one's own mind. It has served as a reminder that ‘because I can think, then I really must exist’. Sometimes we need to be reminded to “live in the moment” or “be in the moment” because our minds can become so consumed with the stress of our day that we often need to remember to stop and enjoy life. This process begins in our mind; we must think it and then act upon it. This is never truer than with our family, who usually need our full attention and that requires us to clear our mind and be in the present.
There are other ways the popular statement works, though. We have heard the phrase, “You are what you eat”. I think I will eat healthy foods; therefore, I am healthy. Many times, however, our thoughts play against us, betraying our self-esteem: I think I want to eat fatty foods; therefore, I am fat. Or on an emotional level “I think I am a loser; therefore, I am one.” These thoughts can be overwhelming and sometimes lead to terrible actions. This is when it is most important for us to remember that we are God’s wonderful creation, made for His glory.
Unfortunately, too many times, our thoughts make us sin against God. Rene Descartes thought he was making a philosophical breakthrough when he made his statement, but God’s word had already brought this to our attention long before. In Proverbs 23, he gave warning of the man who smiles to your face and gives you of his food, but in his heart is thinking badly of you. Beware of treating someone kindly when in your heart you have ill- feelings toward them. The Ten Commandments warned us about adultery, coveting, lying, and even murder, because if we so much think about it, it is as we have already committed that sin. “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he”.
The good news is that although our mind can be our worst enemy, our God is faithful to forgive us and wipe our mind’s slate clean. (1 Jn.1:9) Confess those negative thoughts to God today; be filled with His love and the positive thinking that comes with dwelling in Him. In this way, when “I think I am in Christ; Therefore, I am”!
Dear Lord, my negative thoughts can all too often get the best of my mind and cause me to believe that I am those things. I allow Satan to tell me that I cannot be or do better. But today I confess those thoughts to you and ask that you fill me with your spirit. Renew my mind and allow me to set my thoughts on you so that what I think, is pure and holy and therefore reflect you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Proverbs 23:7a (NLV).
All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.