"As a man thinks in his heart, so is he." -Proverbs 23:7
In other words, you are what you think. This isn't just a Christian adage, but it has been proven in scientific spheres as well. Multiple studies involving placebo treatments have delivered some fascinating results. In one particular study, patients took fake pills and faux acupuncture sessions for pain relief to test the mind's effect on physical outcomes. People who read the list of "cons" associated with either treatment were more likely to report experiencing negative symptoms after these treatments. The other group was informed of the treatments' benefits and reported lower pain levels after the experiment! Even though the treatments had no impact on the person's body, the participants' perception was a major game changer! The research draws similar conclusions from other studies that emphasize the same idea: the mind is a powerful tool that can change physical outcomes. That's why meditation is so important! I'm not talking about Eastern meditation that emphasizes emptying the mind. Our minds are never really empty so it's important to be intentional about what we dwell on. We are always speaking into our hearts, whether it's truth or lies.
"WHAT CAPTIVATES YOUR IMAGINATION ULTIMATELY TAKES YOU CAPTIVE."
Filling our mind with scripture is not only beneficial; it is a powerful tool in combating the lies of the enemy! Even if you repeat one verse throughout the day, keeping God's word at the forefront of our minds prevents entanglements with sins like unforgiveness, anger, jealousy, and lust. One of my favorite ways to meditate is to take one verse at a time and read it out loud, emphasizing different words. Here's an example if you want to try it out!
First repetition: "As a MAN thinks in HIS heart, so IS he."
Second repetition: "As a man THINKS in his HEART, so is HE."
Sometimes, changing the way you read a verse can shift your understanding of it. Someone once said that what we think in our minds will creep into our hearts, flow out of our mouths, and become our character.