It takes work to keep our thinking where it should be. A lot of work and most of us don’t like that kind of work. It’s easier to plod through life not thinking about our thinking. It’s almost like thinking about our thinking hurts our brain.
The truth is thinking about our thinking with the purpose of being deliberate in our thinking uses up a heck of a lot of energy. Caloric energy. Our brain is quite a greedy organ and just like going for a run or riding a bike, our brain burns up alot of extra calories and our brain doesn’t like to do that.
While our brain is greedy it would also seem very lazy. So much of our daily life is lived through routine and habit that we can go all day living, breathing and even working quite mindlessly–without thinking.
Have you ever driven home from work only to get out of your car and not remember much of the drive? The drive has become so routine you do it without thinking.
Our brain has a great big job to do and it will work hard to quickly develop habit and routine around as much of our life as possible because it is an efficient way to get things done while conserving energy. Habit and routine require little think time and therefore little energy and our brain being such a conservationist, likes it that way.
So while our brain would seem lazy, it is in fact very efficient.
Habits of mind once created are reinforced over time because of the brains unwillingness to work hard to build a new habit. It just wants to stick with the established habit. It’s easier that way, it doesn’t require work.
This is why it is very hard to change habits. People say old habits die hard and it’s true.
This is also why we have a hard time changing our thinking. Firstly, it is hard to even recognize thinking habits that are unfavorable, negative and faith squelching because so many habits are mindlessly performed–without thinking.
Secondly, if we recognize negative thinking, it’s just easier to set it aside and forget about it. Remembering that our brain wants to conserve energy and changing a habit requires work and that requires energy.
Negative thoughts here and there left unchecked can quickly become habits in our thinking set up against the very purposes of God in our life and they become ruinous to our faith.
We have to guard our thinking and that takes work. We are told to cast down imaginations and capture every thought that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, 2Corinthians 10:5.
We have to bump our brains out of the old lazy routines and habits and consistently stay in God’s Word so we can lay down healthy habits that grow our faith and draw us closer to God. We should be deliberate about what we allow into our thinking to create the kind of habits we want.