Stinkin Thinkin By Ben Fronczek
As we begin a New Year many of us think about New Year resolutions, maybe new goals, or things we want to accomplish. But after considering and looking at some great accomplishments of others, I have to confess that there have been times when I have had some great ideas about things I would like to do, but that’s as far as I got; great ideas but I did not act on them.
And I know that I am not the only one guilty of this. As I thought about this problem, I have came to the realization that there are many things in this world that hinder and keep us from achieving our goals or dreams. There are things that stop us from doing fantastic, meaningful things, or hinder us from doing something of real substance with our life.
Over the next few weeks I would like to talk about some of these things that hinder us or short circuit our ambition. I want to talk about this because I truly believe that we designed to do great things; because as I read it in the Bible, God created us that way…. He created us in His own image. And if that is so we should be able to do some amazing things.
You see God knows more about us and our potential than we do. We are designed for glory. We have an awesome potential and He know it better than we do.
Before God disbursed the people of the earth at the Tower of Babel, because of their wickedness, God made an interesting statements as to the ability and potential of man.
Read Genesis 11:1-7 (Especially take note of Verse 6 in red)
“Now the whole world had one language and a common speech. 2 As men moved eastward, they found a plain in Shinar and settled there. They said to each other, “Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly.” They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar. Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the whole earth.”
But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower that the men were building. The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.”
When I consider some of the awesome things that people have done, I have to admit, I am blown away. The building of amazing projects, the advances in science and technology, inventions that are beyond my comprehension, I wonder how can anybody come up with some of the stuff that’s out there. How can anyone plan and build or even take on such huge projects?
And I’ve come to realize, I just don’t think that big. And then for some reason like many others, I occasionally sabotage myself with negative thoughts and attitudes. Do you know what I am talking about? Like taking a year to travel around the world, or like owning and living in really big house, or doing something really important to benefit mankind, or writing a book to inspire other, or starting a new business…And what do some of us do when we imagine these kind of things? We short circuit those dreams by thinking, “I can’t do anything like that.” Or think that these dreams are beyond our ability.
We can even short circuit following through with these great ideas because of a negative view of our self, and by putting our self down and believing, ‘I can’t or don’t deserve more that what I already have.
In Proverbs 23:7 King Solomon wrote a truth for the ages. The verse basically states,
‘As a man thinks in himself, so is he.’ ASV
According to Solomon, what we think, how we think, will directly affect who we are and what we end up doing with our life. We are not going to be victorious if we are always walking around with a defeated attitude.
You are not going to step out and do big and wonderful things for this world or for yourself if you think that you are insignificant, weak, or unworthy. You won’t even try. But it doesn’t have to be this way. That’s not part of God’s design for us.
I remember reading a story years ago about a couple on vacation and they stayed in a motel on Lake George. The middle aged man was a good man who had achieved a moderate level of success at his own business. While on a cruise ship that goes all the way up the lake the man was thinking that he had reached a comfortable level of success for who he was.
As they cruised up the shoreline they saw one of those large houses on the shore line that just blew them both away. It was beautiful, more a small mansion that a house. It had big beautiful windows that over looked the lake. It had big beautiful decks and porches. It was nicely landscaped with an Adirondack camp look. It even had attached boat house where one could walk down stairs inside their home to their boat garage, get in their boat, push the garage door button and cruise out on to the open water in one of their boats. It was so picturesque, so peaceful looking on the water, surrounded by mountains and small beaches.
As the man look out at the house he commented to his wife saying, “I can’t even imagine living in a place like that none the less owning something like that.” As he said the words, immediately something inside his head said, ‘Don’t worry with a mindset like that you won’t – you will never live in a great place like that!’
The man correctly realized that his own thoughts and negative attitude were shutting him down, stifling him into believing that he did not deserve, nor would he ever possess such a beautiful home.
At that very moment he corrected himself by determining right there that he should believe in himself and to trust in God’s ability to do awesome things through him and for him.
AND, it’s the same with us. If you don’t think that you can do something, that you can build something like a great business, or if you don’t think that you’ll ever acquire something here in your head, you probably never will.
We not only have this awesome ability and potential to do so much, I also believe our God the Father wants to help us, His children, do wonderful things.
My favorite Bible verse is 2 Chronicles 16:9
“For the eyes of the LORD move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.”
Do you see how God wants to help His own? How big can you dream? Have you ever thought about this church having a membership of 2 or 3 hundred? Have you ever thought about traveling around the world helping people, serving as a missionary in some capacity?
What about working your dream job or starting a new business?
What about living in a certain area or a certain kind of house?
How big can you dream? If I understand this correctly, we have to conceive it, or imagine something on the inside before we are ever going to receive it.
But if you do imagine something great, what do some of us do? We sabotage it! We bury it because we think too small, and we don’t believe we can do any more than we are doing right now. The barrier is in our mind.
It’s not because God lacks the resources and desire to bless us, most of the time it’s not even because you personally lack the talent or recourses. Rather it’s our own wrong thinking that stifles us and keeps us from getting what God would probably love to bless us with.
I once heard this called, “Stinkin Thinkin”. It’s a lack of vision, and a lack of faith. Unless you and I are willing to change our thinking, and even enlarge our vision and view of ourselves, we are going to stay right where we are.
I think we should dream big and try to reach greater heights in our life. Most of us to some extent have already done this. Almost everybody here in our church owns their own home, car, maybe more than one car. We have jobs. Some own a business they chose to be in. At one time you could only dream about having these things, and now you have them whether you what them, appreciate them or not. You imagined having that car, that truck, a house, or farm, and now you have it.
My point is you don’t have to stop, or give up dreaming and trying to fulfill more dreams. Picture in your mind where you want to be, how you want to live, and see your life getting better. See yourself doing what you always wanted to be doing. See yourself starting a new business. See yourself going on a nice vacation. See yourself retiring. See this church growing with all kind of neat programs, even buying a piece of land and building an awesome church building and then move forward with it believing that it will all eventually materialize.
You may think I’m being silly, that nothing is going to change. I think that kind of thinking is stinken thinken. These kind of dreams are attainable!
If all you can do is think about how hard it is, and how you can’t do this or that, and imagine only defeat and failure, that is exactly what you are headed for. But if you develop an image of victory, success, joy, peace, happiness, nothing on earth will be able to keep you from these things except God Himself.
Paul knew this. In Philippians he wrote,
“I can do everything (all things) through Him who gives me strength”.
Paul knew where his own strength and power to do awesome things came from,,,, our Lord!
The Apostle Paul wrote about this to the Ephesians 3:20-21
“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”
Paul here said that ‘God is able to do more than we ask for or can even imagine thru His power that is at work in us’
I believe that God wants us to be all that we can be. He wants us to rise to new heights. He wants to increase you in wisdom and knowledge and help you make better decisions, and help you see and accomplish what others cannot.
If you want this, you must think bigger, increase your vision, and get rid of the ’stinken thinken’, the self imposed limits we put on ourselves. Some of you may already have some goals, things that you would like to accomplish. But then again there are some here who want to do something, but don’t know what it is.
I believe God will show us the way at just the right time. But I think sometimes when He give us an idea we don’t recognize it’s from God. Too many times we don’t believe we can do what He shows us. He plants a seed in our heart and we continue to keep burying it even further…so deep in fact that it cannot grow.
Maybe God wants to improve your marriage. Maybe He wants to improve your family. Maybe He wants to free you from some bad habits or an addiction, or free you from debt, change your career or do something you can’t imagine yet.. Don’t say no, it can’t be done because it can.
Today I encouraging you to open the eyes of your heart, and stop doubting your God given ability and together let’s move on to the place where God wants us to be.
It may mean a lot of work, or what may seem like taking a few chances, but I’ve learned that if you do a little bit ever day eventually you can accomplish even a large task. Jesus said that if you have faith the size of a mustard seed you can tell a mountain to get up and move from here to there.
Do you believe or are you plagued with stinkin thinking?
The choice is yours. You can do great things, but first you have to believe.
For more lessons click on the following link: http://granvillenychurchofchrist.org/?page_id=566