The moment you’re conscious of an unwanted thought you’ve got two seconds to kick it and replace it with another one. If you do this, your brain will treat the initial thought as vapor and it won’t form a neural pathway. Paul wrote, “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13 NIV).
The door of escape is open the moment you’re aware of the thought. If you hesitate to evict it, the door will close and the thought, like a computer virus, will take over the circuitry of your brain. Once you kick out the unwanted thought you must quickly replace it with a positive one. Paul addressed this issue when he wrote, “Finally, brethren, 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” (Philippians 4:8 NASB). To “dwell” is to “live in a specified place.” We must not dwell on thoughts that nurture bitterness, anger, lust, failure, death, curses, jealousy and a host of other sins. Instead, our minds must dwell on Paul’s list of uplifting and godly thoughts.
Because I’m an obsessive person practicing this two step process has changed my life. I kick out lies and replace them with truth. I kick out curses and replace them with blessings. I kick out impure thoughts and replace them with pure ones.
Try this for one day: Kick out bad thoughts and dwell on good ones (Corinthians 10:5).