What I Learned from a Scrabble Word Search
The older I get the more I believe that MINDSET is everything. It is the difference in peace and fear, content and unrest, gratitude and complaint, and even life and death.
Philippians 4:8 is a verse I have tried to memorize so many times. Maybe my brain is just tired, but I can never seem to recall all the whatevers. It goes like this…
Finally, brothers and sisters,
whatever is true,
whatever is noble,
whatever is right,
whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely,
whatever is admirable –
if anything is excellent
or praiseworthy –
think about these things. (NIV)
Recently, I decided to not worry about the order of the verse and to find an acrostic to help me memorize the words. Why? Because this verse comes right after the “Do not be anxious about anything” verse. It is a “go-to” verse for all of us when there is a battle raging in our minds. When the gray clouds of winter seem to settle right down in the depths of our being. This verse is key.
Google is great. I found a Scrabble word search, plugged in the first letters of each word, and boom! What did I get? PREPLANT
Amazingly, it is a farming term that means “occurring before planting” as in…
PREPLANT IRRIGATION – to water the soil before planting
PREPLANT FUMIGATION – to rid the soil of pests before planting
PREPLANT FERTILIZATION – to fertilize the soil with nutrients before planting
We often think of “soil” in spiritual terms as related to our heart or soul. Maybe we should consider the importance of preparing the soil of our minds. For anything to reach our hearts and souls, it must be processed through the mind first.
How do we begin to irrigate, fumigate and fertilize the soil of our minds? We PREPLANT.
How do we PREPLANT? We set our minds.
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. (Romans 12:2 NIV)
You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! (Isaiah 26:3 NLT)
For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. (Romans 8:6 ESV)
Do we want transformation, renewal, life and peace? Absolutely! In fact, the world is in search of all of those things. Just take a look around.
Scripture is clear. To find those things requires a mind set “on things that are above, not on earthly things. (Colossians 3:2)
We irrigate the soil of our minds by immersing our thoughts in the living water of the Word.
We fumigate the soil of our minds by ridding our thoughts of the pesty lies and by taking every thought captive replacing it with truth of God’s promises.
We fertilize the soil of our minds by setting our thoughts on whatever is Pure, Right, Excellent, Praiseworthy, Lovely, Admirable, Noble, and True. We use the acrostic P.R.E.P.L.A.N.T. to replace the negative with positive, life-giving thoughts.
We irrigate by MEDITATING on God’s word day and night. Start small. A few minutes in the morning and before bed is like a tree planted by streams of water that never withers bearing fruit in all seasons (Psalm 1:3). Worship also invites us to sing out the Word of God in song.
We fumigate by MEMORIZING scripture, God’s promises, that speak truth in our current battle. Use Google to find a scripture that speaks to your need. Write it down. Pray it over your life. God keeps every promise He makes. He is a shield for those who seek refuge and protection in Him (Proverbs 30:5).
We fertilize by MONITORING our mindset. Instead of choosing a mindset that robs of us life-giving nutrients, we intentionally focus on the best not the worst, beautiful not the ugly, things to praise, not things to curse in every situation and scenario (Philippians 4:8 MSG). Filling our minds with nutrients (the whatevers in Philippians 4:8 - P.R.E.P.L.A.N.T.).
PREPLANT - a necessary process to cultivate good soil – a necessary process to a healthy, positive mindset. When we meditate, memorize, and monitor, we prepare good soil… a mindset that brings life and peace.
Photo by Neslihan Gunaydin on Unsplash