I’ve always liked what Vince Lombardi, the legendary football coach, once said. “The good Lord gave you a body that can stand most anything. It’s your mind you have to convince.” Our minds are very powerful in influencing the direction we are going. Our bodies, behavior, and ultimately, our lives will follow whatever our mind is set to accomplish whether that is good or bad. Consequently, taking care of our mental well-being shouldn’t be ignored. Sometimes it’s difficult to give adequate time to something that is “invisible,”’ however, the invisible things in life are usually the most important.
No matter what is going on around us, the Lord wants our minds to be set on Him. “Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth,” Colossians 3:2. There has been so much swirling around us in the last nine months that it’s easy to become hyper-focused on things that are on earth. Thank goodness God has better plans! He wants our minds to be set on things above. He will keep in perfect peace those whose mind is stayed on Him, because he trusts in Him, Isaiah 26:3.
At TCA, we are blessed to be able to take the time during the week to pray together as faculty and staff and to worship together in chapel as a student body. Our relationship with our heavenly Father helps us to cope well with struggles that life brings our way. In addition, when those struggles seem to be too much, the Lord has also blessed us with relationships with each other, so that we realize we are not alone during the stressful times.
Learning about other’s experiences and how they coped with difficult situations can also add perspective to our own situations and help us to have mental fortitude. Viktor Frankl was an Austrian neurologist who survived concentration camps, including Auschwitz, during the Holocaust and later wrote Man’s Search for Meaning. He said, “Life is never made unbearable by circumstances, but only by lack of meaning and purpose.” When our minds are set on God’s plan and purpose for our lives, He can give us the strength to endure pretty much anything.
Keeping our minds on God’s purposes for us today could include taking time to pray, being still, laughing, worshipping the Lord, enjoying God’s creation, taking care of our physical bodies, and regularly reminding ourselves of who God is by reading His Word. This life is a journey with many ups and downs, but our God remains the same. In turn, that means our outlook can wholeheartedly remain steadfast on Him. “To set the mind on the spirit is life and peace,” Romans 6:8.
I hope everyone in our TCA family is able to take some time this week to pray, reflect, and know that God wants our full attention. He will give us peace and comfort that is beyond what we can understand, so that we can comfort others and be a light for Him. For more information about mental health and practical ideas to boost your mental well-being, check out this article from Focus on the Family.
Carrie Harless, M.Ed., LPC