What you train your mind to do

A few years ago, I stopped using notes when I preached. It resulted from using my notes less and less through the years, but it also happened because of some changes I made. I decided to put several patterns in place that helped me achieve this goal. These changes included writing less “catchy” outlines and ones that were easier for me to remember, using the passage of scripture as my guide, and keeping my Bible as the primary focus. It was also much more practical than merely writing differently. It meant that I needed my sermon completed by Wednesday morning. Then I could edit and review it on Thursday. Saturday night, I reviewed the sermon at least four times. Finally, I get up early on Sunday morning and review the sermon notes before walking on the local track and talking through the whole thing one more time in complete form and once as a general outline.

These minor changes and patterns have helped me to remember more and more accurately.

I believe you can achieve numerous life goals and dreams in much the same way. Decide what you want to do and then set up patterns to make it happen. For example, tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day. I believe most of us would like to be more thankful. What would happen if you set up actions to achieve that goal? Things like starting the day with a grateful journal, keeping lists of blessings, and changing what you talk about with friends. Perhaps you could keep all the positive comments people sent you in emails, texts, or online and throw away all the criticism. What if you took steps to train your mind to be thankful more than one day a year?

Perhaps one day, you will wake up and find you can be thankful without thinking about it. Maybe it would be the regular pattern of your life. All you have to do is train your mind to do it.

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