Winning the Battle for the Mind
I recently spent some time with a friend and was able to catch up with him and see how he was doing in life. I lived with this friend when we were both in school and it became clear, while we were living together, that he struggled with anxiety. Due to his anxiety, he would often feel stuck and inconsistent in his decision-making, relationships, thought-life, and just life in general. However, in our most recent conversations, he seemed to have to turned a corner for the better. He mentioned how his most recent life transition had been his best and easiest yet. Without even asking him why this was the case, I knew why he was experiencing such success. From previous conversations with him, I knew that he had recently sought out professional counseling and that he had been taking a healthy dosage of prescription medicine for his anxiety, prescribed by his doctor. Over the past 6 months, possibly for the first time in his life, my friend began winning the battle for his mind.
As one author puts it, after God, our mind is the most powerful thing in the Universe. I believe once our soul has been dealt with, the real battle in life is for our mind. Whether you think the attacks on the mind are spiritual or natural forces, I believe those forces' intention is to wage war against our minds. In the Scriptures, Paul tells Christians to be transformed by the renewing of their minds. King Solomon once stated that "for as he thinks in his heart, so he is." Other authors I respect have spoken to this truth as well:
“Thoughts are real, physical things that occupy mental real estate. Moment by moment, every day, you are changing the structure of your brain through your thinking. When we hope, it is an activity of the mind that changes the structure of our brain in a positive and normal direction.” -Dr. Caroline Leaf
“Research shows that 75 to 98 percent of mental, physical, and behavioral illness comes from one’s thought life. This staggering and eye-opening statistic means only 2 to 25 percent of mental and physical illnesses come from the environment and genes.” Dr. Leaf
“Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else.” -George Orwell
“Your battles inspired me - not the obvious material battles but those that were fought and won behind your forehead.” - James Joyce
The devil knows that if he can capture our mind, he holds our future. - Unknown
There was a time in my life when I thought my life was going to be destroyed by the battle that was daily taking place between my ears. Thankfully, by God's grace, I woke up and realized that there was an actual battle taking place, and that battle was for my mind. I realized that the first step towards healing was not looking for a new place to live, a new career, or new friends. The first step towards healing was to finally ask for help in starting the process of winning the battle for my mind. That process continues today.