Chris Underwood: Encouragement Note, May 2017

“We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far.”

Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he:

Each of knows that what fills our eyes and ears causes a reaction within our brains. Those thoughts translate into actions that are obedient to the will of God, or disobedient.

Thankfully the Bible scriptures remind us daily to think of the things that are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report, and anything else that we want recorded in the book of Life.

The positive virtues help shape us to be filled with strength of the Lord, and makes it possible to repent of sin. Consider some or all the sin that once were a struggle to reject in your life. Those obstacles are eliminated or greatly reduced from your life through the blessing of the Jesus who gave his life for our redemption.

We still have to be careful with our words that come out of our mouths. The beginning of those words are a reflection of our thoughts. Think on being humble in the daily presence of the Lord, and he will lift you up.

Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

Have a great day.

Chris is a brother in Christ from Chicago who works in aviation electronics. He worked recently for three months in São José dos Campos, Brazil.

#thoughts #words #encouragement #encouragement-notes

Things that come to mind when I hear the word “home”


There’s no place like home

Home is where the heart is





My address

Homeward Bound (it’s a movie that I remember watching as a kid)

My family

Home-improvement (not the TV show that I remember watching as a kid)

The topic that I will be preaching on during a VBS in June

Multiple songs that get sung during worship that include the word home


Have anything that you would like to add?

And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return. But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.” (Hebrews 11:15-16)

#home, #thoughts, #word-association

10 thoughts to start the day

(From Psalms 116 and 118)

  1. This is the day the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
  2. I will praise thee: for thou hast heard me, and art become my salvation.
  3. The Lord is on my side; I will not fear; what can man do unto me?
  4. The Lord is my strength and song, and is become my salvation.
  5. I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications.
  6. Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.
  7. I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living.
  8. I will pay my vows unto the Lord now in the presence of all his people.
  9. Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.
  10. Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee.

—Jim Moffett

Thoughts For Today to Brighten Your Day

By Glenn, Mercedes and Lauren Hitchcock

Warner Robins church of Christ, Warner Robins, Georgia

#god, #psalms, #thoughts

Guest Article: Anti-Virus Software for the Brain by Joshua Gulley

1 Peter 1:15-16 is what I thought of when I read this great article by Josh:

The longer I am a Christian, the more keenly aware I am of my need for God’s grace. We are supposed to “bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5), and I believe this to be my greatest failure as a follower of Jesus. We are supposed to have a filter—a kind of screening process our minds use to dismiss material that is not going to be healthy for us to think about. Philippians 4:8 describes the standard: “Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” Using this set of requirements, we should probably dismiss MOST of the things we encounter on a daily basis as food for thought. I struggle to do this. There are images or ideas that enter my mind at times, and I know immediately that they are unhealthy for my spirit, yet I allow myself to follow them out. And, just like a mature tree is harder to remove from the ground than a sprout (and leaves an uglier spot in the ground once removed)—or just like the cooking dish is harder to clean after it has dried for hours—a thought process is harder to avoid once you have allowed it to take root in your mind. Once those neurons carve out a new path, they like to return and travel it again.

God, help us to apply the filtration process in Philippians 4:8 to keep our brains free of the kind of trash that tends to lead us away from Christ. – Joshua Gulley

Josh is a member of the Smithville church of Christ and he teaches music at the High School level. 

#christian-living, #christianity, #guest-article, #heart-issues, #holiness, #illustrations, #spiritual-analogies, #thoughts

What’s in your bucket?

If you were walking back from a well carrying a bucket of water and someone jostled you, there could be spilled from that bucket only that which it contained.

As you walk along life’s way, people are constantly bumping you. If your heart is full of ill will, bad temper and ugly disposition, only those things will be spilled. However, if you are full of life, joy and happiness, then you will spill a smile or pleasant remark.

You can spill from your bucket only that which it contains. I heard a Gospel preacher say, “Whatever is in the well of your hearts will come up in the bucket of your lives.” That statement is very true.

Matt 5:43-45 “Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for He makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”

“Thoughts For Today to Brighten Your Day” by Glenn, Mercedes and Lauren Hitchcock

#heart, #thoughts

My Life Without Christ?

My life without Christ would consist of the same thoughts the apostle Paul uttered:

“If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable” (1 Corinthians 15:19).

#apostle, #christ, #consist, #life, #thoughts, #utter, #without

Wandering Minds

“Wandering Minds”

A study that came out in November 2010 found that wandering minds make people unhappy.

The study found that people spend about half their time thinking about being somewhere else, or doing something else. The researchers tracked 2,250 people using an iPhone app that contacted them at random intervals to ask how happy they were, what they were doing, and whether they were thinking about it or something else. They found that 46.9 percent of the time the people were thinking about something else, and as a result were unhappy.

“A human mind is a wandering mind, and a wandering mind is an unhappy mind,” wrote psychologists Matthew Killingsworth and Daniel Gilbert of Harvard University in the journal Science.

Suggested applications

●We need purpose in life to be happy.

●Our thought life usually determines our happiness, which is why Philippians 4:8 encourages us to think on “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right….”

Reference: “‘Wandering minds’ make people unhappy: study,” (11/12/10)

“Thoughts For Today to Brighten Your Day” by Glenn Hitchcock

#human-mind, #news, #purpose, #thoughts

Wisdom is …

Wisdom is the art of seeing connections between thoughts and words, between words and actions, between actions and consequences.

#actions, #consequences, #thoughts, #wisdom, #words

Are we like whitewashed tombs?

“Behavior is what a man does, not what he thinks, feels, or believes!” This statement was posted on the Internet with following comments commending the author as being insightful. I agree in the strictest sense of the word — the first dictionary definition of the word is, “observable activity in a human or animal”. However it totally ignores the relationship between out thoughts, feelings and beliefs and how we behave. The second dictionary definition, “the aggregate of responses to internal and external stimuli” points toward this relationship.

The statement seems to ignore this relationship and rather reinforces the commonly held false belief that it doesn’t matter what one thinks, feels, or believes: all that matters is what one does. This could not be further from the truth and contradicts Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 5. Jesus here teaches that while the old law focused on bad behavior, we need to focus on getting our hearts right — that is, get our thoughts and feelings under control. If we control our thoughts and feelings, we will not behave badly.

It is sad to see such misunderstandings in the world. But sometimes I wonder if members of God’s household do not think this way at the core. If we do, are we not like white-washed tombs?

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.” Matthew 23:27

#behavior, #beliefs, #feelings, #motivation, #thoughts