Change: How to Change Unwanted Thoughts and Emotions

Sunday Sermon Series Change

Philippians 4:4-13

Some Christians struggle with certain thoughts or emotions such as worry, lust, anger, fear, or a myriad of other thoughts and emotions. Some may need counseling beyond these six steps to help take control of those unwanted thoughts and emotions, but meditating on these verses can help. 

  1. Find your joy in the Lord (4:4). … You can cultivate an attitude of joy. The theme of this little book of Philippians is that you can be happy in a bad place. Paul wrote this letter in prison and he was finding joy in the Lord. Even through this pandemic we can find joy in the Lord. 

  2. Build a reputation for gentleness (4:5). … Relationships are a big source of stress. Being gentle or gracious in our relationships can help relieve some of that stress. 

  3. Replace your worries with prayers (4:6-7). … We’re not supposed to worry. We’re supposed to bring every worry to God. This is to be a pattern in our lives that we pray to God, thanking Him for the good and asking him to take care of the bad, the stuff that usually makes us worry. As a result, the peace of God will help take away those worries. 

  4. Fill your mind with positive, pure, beautiful things (4:8). … Paul lists eight adjectives, but it’s easier to remember three that sum them all up. If you want to change what goes on inside your mind, you need to change what goes into it. Paul tells us to put good things into our minds and it will change how we think.

  5. Put your beliefs into practice (4:9). … Doing actions is a good way to change your feelings. Whenever you feel discouraged or depressed or moody, you don’t want to do anything. But getting up and doing good things can really change those feelings and thoughts for the good. 

  6. Learn the secret of being content in any circumstance: a relationship with Christ (4:10-13). … The letter of Philippians is a thank you letter for financial assistance they sent to Paul. He is grateful for the help, but he also makes it clear that he would be content even without it because he has learned a secret to be content in all circumstances. That secret is Christ. As believers, Christ lives in us and gives us the strength we need to be content. No, this verse isn’t about sports. This verse is about being content and finding joy no matter the circumstances. 

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