Taken from a real life experience, here’s a tangible method you can implement today to change your own life.
One day I spontaneously decided to go to Starbucks to work.
When I walked in, I noticed a friend and former colleague, Christina Forester, who I hadn’t seen in months. I sat down to connect with her. She was beaming.
“What has happened in your life?” I asked.
“Oh, everything is sooo going well. I am doing great. Things have turned around both personally and professionally. Everything is looking up. I couldn't be happier. Life is just really good!”
“Wow! I am so happy for you. And proud of you!” I exclaimed.
All that good news made me curious. We had commiserated a time or two about issues in our lives, and there had been times where things hadn’t gone so smoothly for her, especially in the past turbulent year when she had experienced a major upending in her life as she came out of the closet amidst a lot of harsh criticism. She survived through a period of deep depression and battle with anxiety. So when I saw this new light in her eyes, I was very happy and wanted to know more.
“To what do you attribute the flow your life is in now?” I asked.
Between me and you, from my perspective, if life changes externally for the best there is usually an internal shift that’s taken place. I believe we are the cause of our experience. Circumstances don’t just happen, we create them by our thoughts, attitudes, and the energy we bring.
I learned that there was an internal shift for Christina. The moment it happened her life began to change.
She recounted to me a sermon given by her grandmother, a pioneering and powerful female preacher. In a time of great anxiety and doubt, Christina had felt drawn to listen to an old sermon given by her grandmother. “Without knowing what the topic of the sermon would be, within the first 5 minutes I found the answer to everything I was facing,” Christina said. “It was as though she were speaking directly to me, right now, from this word she gave back in the 80’s! But it was exactly what I needed to hear...and it gave me complete freedom, transforming my mind and spirit.”
Christina’s grandmother told of a simple, tangible way to deal with negative thought, doubt and fear: catch the negative thought when it comes to your mind, metaphorically put it in your hands and give it to God as if it were real. Then, ask to see life through the lens of faith, love and hope. This came from the scripture she was preaching on to take captive every thought that does not align with faith, hope and love (2 Cor 10:5). Christina said, “The moment I prayed to begin seeing ALL things through the lens of faith, hope and love instead of through the lens of fear, doubt and pain, everything changed. I immediately felt a shift, and realized I had been blocking all the good things God was trying to bring into my life because I had been coming from this place of fear, doubt and pain instead of faith, hope and love.”
When Christina began to do this practice routinely, she found herself more open to what life brought. Instead of being skeptical and reserved, she was open and receptive. That new mindset is what she says has brought her more opportunity.
“Before, certain opportunities might have filled me with anxiety and doubt. I may have even refused the opportunities. But now, I see these opportunities as exciting and feel confident inside that everything will be fine. It’s one of those practices that, if internalized, will impact your life greatly.”
So that I could internalize it myself, I practiced in front of Christina. She walked me through it. I let go of some weird thoughts, let the positive words in, and felt them deep in my soul.
When I was finished, she remarked that my whole presence changed in an instant. We discovered together how powerful a practice this is.
If you know someone who sees life through fear that seems to be holding them back, share this simple but effective technique. Spread the love with the intention that if this internalized, it’ll impact others, too. It sure has helped me.
Christina Forrester is the Founder and Director of Christian Democrats of America, co-host of the popular podcast "What Would Jesus Pod?" (available on all streaming services), social media brand strategist, writer and musical artist. You can follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @Christinaof9 and on her Facebook page at facebook.com/christinaforrester.