…it depends on what you change them to. The only thoughts/beliefs that will bring lasting peace/joy is the Truth of God. The way God made us is this: Believe/think the spiritual Truths, and you will live in peace/joy. Believe/think untruth, you will experience depression and anxiety. Pretty simple. Lots of other posts on here discuss this from various angles. You may need to do some work if you have too much doubt to believe what God says. There are solutions.
I won’t explain the fruit of the Spirit. If you don’t know what this is, please Google it then come back and finish this post. (waiting)
OK. There are 9 fruits of the Spirit. I see every one of these growing inside me more than ever before in my life. The people around me see that I’m different. It’s because I believe differently than I used to. I think I now know and believe much more Truth.
IT SEEMS LIKE WE NEVER NEED TO FEEL GUILTY* EVER AGAIN!!!
I will be very interested to see if this thought stands up to scrutiny in the months ahead. I hope it’s true. I think it’s true. But I’m not 100% sure.
Also (this is a big one to me), I think that peace/joy is a good METRIC (measurement) for spiritual maturity. Said another way, I think that a Christian’s “joy level” is a good metric for his level of spiritual maturity. And spiritual maturity is another term for “believing the Truth of God”. The more you (1) know and (2) believe what God says, to this extent you are mature spiritually.
NOTE: Note that I’m saying that your joy level is a higher/better metric for spiritual maturity than how righteous you may appear by your behaviors.
*How I’m using the word “guilt”: No guilt = no criticism, no failure, no embarrassment, no condemnation, no insults, no sad recollection of past events, no low self esteem. In other words, you have been declared “judicially innocent” by the only One who has the authority to claim “no guilt” for you and has the power to declare it True, making it True.
What if…you were on death row for a crime you DID commit. Then you got a letter from, say, the President of the US to tell you that you are no longer under any of the laws of any branch of the US government and you’re being given back your freedom and your crime has been forgotten and you’re not in any way guilty. And, going forward, you are not under the laws of the US and you may do what you want to do without consequence !!! Plus you get to keep all your rights and privileges as a US citizen. How would you feel? Would you like to be “never guilty”? And how would you live your life under that hypothetical circumstance? Would it make you “sin” more? Or, on the other hand, would the amount of GRACE you’ve been shown make you grateful and, therefore, loving (meaning…less “sin” so to speak).
This is not exactly like The Gospel. But it’s similar in many ways that are worth thinking about. It’s almost like God wants to say, “OK. I’ll take all the bad consequences away and you will never BE guilty again. Now I want to see how YOU behave now that there are no consequences for you and no threat of you being found guilty.” How would you live your life if you knew that you NEVER accured guilt to your account when you sin? A huge and very important question. I strongly believe that the Bible says that we would actually sin LESS!!!!
This is all very advanced teaching. I think it is what Jesus was referring to when he said that “…the gate is small and the path is narrow and few will find it…” Those you live with (and maybe work with) may react negatively to these ideas and to the various ways you’re about to change. I think they may warn you that this is all wrong. All I can see is that it’s the most lavish peace/joy I’ve ever had and I know several other people who have walked this path and found the same peace/joy I’ve found.
OK. I usually don’t put MY questions here as I usually deal with matters where I’ve arrived at satisfying ANSWERS. But, here is a question I have.
Most of my efforts over the years (like my career work, for example) has been out of fear. In other words, I’ve been very motivated (but also quite unhappy) because I was AFRAID that I might not “succeed” and, therefore, won’t have peace/joy (i.e., “be happy”). So I always worked remarkably hard out of this fear. The Truth is that my fear-driven-work robbed me of the very peace/joy I was seeking.
Now that I’m growing into a greater trust in the undeserved favor (i.e. many blessings) of God, I no longer want to work because of fear, but out of love. But, I don’t entirely understand HOW to do this. I don’t find a type of love right now inside of me that motivates me to work hard.
In my senior year of high school, I remember some pressure/anxiety about my grades. But, in about March, I got accepted to the college I wanted. So, although I had to finish high school for a couple months, the pressure was entirely off regarding my grades. This is like the Christian life in some ways.