READ Nehemiah 7:3-73
Gates are very important things. A gate is the access point to a private or enclosed area. If you want to enter or exit, you do so by the gate. Now that the gates are in place in Jerusalem, Nehemiah secures them by placing gatekeepers to guard them and by placing boundaries on when the gates can be open and when they must be shut. You see while gates are an absolute necessity to the city, they are also a weak point in the defense system if poorly managed.
The mind is much like this walled city of Jerusalem. It is a private area residing within each human that no one else can get access to without permission from the owner. We all choose what we allow to enter, settle and exit, and how we manage our mind gates will affect every area of our lives.
So, like Nehemiah, we must place gatekeepers on our thinking. The common phrase for this is ‘threshold thinking’. When a potentially damaging thought attempts to enter and settle, we must stop it at the door of our mind, divert it and think about something else.
Also like Nehemiah, we must set up boundaries, self-imposed rules on our thinking. Isn’t it interesting that Nehemiah decreed that the gates should be locked tight during dark hours? No one could enter or leave unless it was light. This is great advice when it comes to our thinking. Science has shown that we are most likely to overreact and become irrational during night hours. It is a rhythm of the mind. That’s why it is poor advice to mull over things when we can’t sleep because we rarely see things clearly in the dark. It is also true that it is harder to see things clearly in dark seasons of our lives when we are hurting or struggling. It is important in those seasons not to make drastic decisions until we get clarity of mind.
Your mind is your own. You choose what comes in through the gate. Take charge of it so you can thrive.
Lord, help me to be disciplined in my thinking and take charge of my mind. Amen.