According to information shared while I was attending the transformative and moving Toth retreat two weeks ago (and yes, I’m plugging them because really, you just need to go)…

We think 1, 400 words per minute.

There are 1, 440 minutes in a day.

So we think 2,016,000 words each day.

To put it in another way, the average book length is about 40,000 words.

2,016,000 divided by 40.000?  50.4

We think the equivalent of a little over 50 books a day, friends.


To add insult to injury, we’re also exposed to 3,000 advertising images each day.  Yes.  3,000.  This isn’t a typo – I had to raise my hand and clarify because I thought that absolutely they meant 300.

No.  3,000.

And it made me think of this quote…

Watch your thoughts, they become words.
Watch your words, they become actions.
Watch your actions, they become habits.
Watch your habits, they become your character.
Watch your character, it becomes your destiny. – Unknown

So if our thoughts are directly related to what we put into our minds and our surrounding environment, then I probably need to so some serious assessing of what I’m letting through the gate.

If half of my thoughts are negative, that’s still one million negative words.

If my thoughts become my words, then I’m spewing out roughly a million fiery arrows that pierce and burn.

Those arrows morph into action whether I like it or not.

And then it becomes habit.

Before I know it, like all sin, I’ve gone farther than I ever intended to go, and it’s become my character.

It chills me to write that these thoughts ultimately impact my destiny – which of course, is “New Age speak” for “God’s plan” because I don’t believe in chance anything.

And it all started with what seemed like a little harmless thought.

Negativity can be downright obvious or sometimes sneaky, morphing into words and infiltrating the atmosphere around us with a hazy stink much like what surrounds Pig Pen from the Peanuts gang.

Sometimes negativity can be as simple as relaying a horrific news story to someone else that serves no purpose whatsoever.   It can be as simple as an exhausted sigh when your child has left his shoes out for the tenth time that day.  And it can be as simple as believing the worst about everyone and choosing not to give any grace or the benefit of the doubt.

In a nutshell, destructive thoughts get out in some way or another and wreak, well, destruction.

And while I wouldn’t necessarily consider myself to be a grouchy curmudgeon,  I’m astounded by how many of my thoughts are negative.

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.- 2 Corinthians 10:5

So I’m intentionally holding them captive.  Which in turn requires me to hold my tongue.  Which of course, goes back to my word for 2012 – SELF. CONTROL.

And I stand in the refiner’s fire and trust that the potter is doing a good work.

Thank you, Heavenly Daddy, for:

681.  Words of hope that can fight negative thoughts (Romans 12:2, Philippians 4:8)

682.  A little book I picked up at Toth entitled Fasting All Negative Thoughts by Georgia Hawkins (not available online – you may email her at

683.  Taking up residence in me when I chose your son

684.  The wisdom of you in me

685.  This.  Just this.  You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.  They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them.  We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood.  – 1 John 4:4-6

686.  Silly giggles that make joy on a Tuesday seem do-able.

687.  Hearing “I Wuv You, Mama” from across the room

688.  Reaching to the other side of poverty and despair to offer hope and new life

689.  The steadfast and unwavering wisdom my husband possesses

690.  That same man’s conspiratorial laugh and glance to me when our child says ” I not tired!”

This week may you join me in taking inventory of your thoughts.  Then hold them captive. 

Joining with Ann and Jen…


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