I was afraid of the dark when I was a young boy. Who am I kidding? I’m still not too fond of the dark.
I was really afraid; monsters under my bed, someone peeking in the window. I was even afraid to reach down and pull the covers up! My dad would come do it for me.
I would tell my dad that I was afraid of nightmares, and so he would tell me to have dayhorses. He did. Now you know where my corn was plucked.
What dad was essentially telling me was to spend my waking hours dreaming of positive things, so that I could only dream at night.
Scripture teaches us the wonderful principle of keeping our mind thinking and engaging on the better things. Paul, writing to the Philippians, says, “And now dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Philippians 4:8,9.
Fix your thoughts, think about.
Today I’ve been having nightmares. I’ve been allowing my mind to take me in all kinds of wrong directions. There are good reasons. We all have good reasons to be worried, fearful, overwhelmed, doubtful.
That’s where I’ve been for the past few days. For all the good reasons, I’ve allowed myself to have nightmares instead of dayhorses.
There’s a better reason to ignore good reasons for worry and depression. The better reason is the peace of God that comes with fixing my thoughts on what to think about.
Have you ever seen Cool Hand Luke? Its an old film about a guy who ends up in prison; a chain gang in old Louisiana. The warden’s philosophy is that if someone does wrong, put them into a hot box without food and water until they “get their mind right.” Strother Martin says to Paul Newman, “you gotta get your mind right, Luke.”
This is the way the enemy of our soul works. We listen to the wrong voices and find ourselves with “stinking thinking.” If I can spend more time in the hot box, I’ll “get my mind right.” This is contrary to the pathway to peace.
Self loathing, self destructive thoughts… and actions, ironically do nothing to improve one’s self! Our minds have to be transformed, (Romans 12); sometimes, multiple times per day. Its the dream should focus on; the dayhorses, not the nightmares.