One of the most common ways I struggle with spiritual warfare with the world is with distracted thinking.
I’ve written previously about the issue of shallow thinking, drawing attention to Nicholas Carr’s book “The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains”.
Not only is the Internet moving us toward shallow thinking…it also increases distracted thinking.
Neuroscientists have found that our brains have the capacity to be rewired throughout our lifetime.
In other words…not only does the wiring of my brain affect my thinking habits…my thinking habits also affect the wiring of my brain.
If I spend a great deal of time on the Internet…it affects how my brain is wired.
If I spend time in quiet prayer…it affects the way my brain is wired.
In medicine…we live in a very distracted world.
If we are going to make any progress in setting our minds on the things above…we need to develop and strengthen habits that help us deal with distraction.
The first habit whenever possible, is starting the day with quiet time with the Lord. Taking time to read Scripture…time to read devotional literature…and time being quiet before the Lord.
Listening to quiet instrumental music during this time is also helpful to lessen distracted thinking. If I’m particularly distracted that morning…I will listen through headphones. I listen to Pandora, which allows you to create your own station of quiet music. A couple of my favorite artists are Tim Janis and Paul Cardall.
Another important habit is taking some time in the middle of the day to again quiet our mind before the Lord. Slow down your thinking and simply try and sense the presence of the Lord.
Incorporating the ancient practice of the Daily Office is very helpful. Peter Scazzero gives very practical advice on how to keep the Daily Office in his book, Emotionally Healthy Spirituality.
Listening to music during this time is also very helpful. If you are able…download one album to your phone or mp3 player to have available. One album I recommend is “Sanctum Sanctuorum” by Constance Demby.
If we want to set our minds on the things above…we need to develop mental habits to make that happen.
Prayer: Lord, help me learn how to keep my mind set on You!