What Are You Listening To?

What are your favorite songs of all time? Some may be upbeat, some may be mellow, some may have a message that just stirs your soul. Go ahead, think of some songs that have resonated with you. A song that comes quickly to mind for me is Meant to Live by Switchfoot and the chorus says:

We were meant to live for so much more

Have we lost ourselves?

Somewhere we live inside

The bridge proclaims:

We want more than this world's got to offer

We want more than the wars of our fathers

And everything inside screams for second life

Something about the sound and the lyrics just connected with me as a 16-year-old. Feeling cool by going to their cool concerts with my cool cousin, Elia King, the guy that wrote the song my wife and I sang last week, We Can Get There From Here, probably helped it stick. However, it happened it became the soundtrack for my life that I listened to over and over on my 20-25 minute car rides from home to Andrews Academy.

Can you think of songs that were like theme songs for you? What was your soundtrack when you look back?

Thankfully, I was into music that was both provocative and positive, and pointed my mind to God with truth. I knew others who didn’t have soundtracks as healthy and helpful as mine.

Music is powerful. What we put in our heads is powerful. Why? Because it has a huge impact on the thoughts that we think.

I imagine that if you took the cues above and paused a moment to think of some of your go-to songs that you’ve come up with some pretty easily. You may have replayed these songs hundreds of times.

What if I asked you to go a little deeper? What if I asked you what thoughts you have been replaying in your mind? What tracks are you playing? Are they negative? Most of us tend to go that way.

I encourage you to take inventory of your thoughts. Get a reality check and then choose thoughts that will help you grow into the person you want to become that God tells us we can be. People filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control as Galatians 5 says. We can be people that are always thankful in every circumstance as Philippians 4 indicates. We get there one thought at a time.

Here’s my encouragement for you, recognize where you typically overreact based on negative soundtracks playing in your head and replace them with what the Bible calls us to think. It will require change. God says, “…my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” 

Collect scriptures that will remind You of God’s thoughts and perspectives that are so different than ours. Review the ones that feel especially timely for you twice a day for a season, maybe a month so it becomes a more natural go-to thought for you and repeat the process. You will not only memorize but will internalize relevant and life-changing Scriptures, the word of God as you upgrade to this new soundtrack. Once you jump on this new flow you won’t want to go back.

I’m indebted to Jon Acuff and Craig Groeschel for these thoughts and their respective books Soundtracks and Winning the War in Your Mind. I highly recommend both titles. Craig’s book is more Bible based. Jon’s is more research based. Enjoy the new soundtracks.

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