Golden Pillar Class Study, teacher Edith Tolbert.

We all practice something every day. Sister Erica started playing piano for the choir when she was 16. She had already been practicing to play piano for years. She had to practice before she was ready. If you practice, you’ll get good at it.

Practicing murmuring and complaining if things don’t go the way you want, you’ll get good at it. The Bible says do all things without murmuring (Philippians 2:14). If you practice finding fault because you think you’re the measure of right, you’ll be good at finding fault. Practicing anger if you’re impatient, you’ll get good at it. If we’re risen with Christ, set our mind above.

Colossians 3:1-2 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.

We practice a lot of things in our mind every day. What you practice in your mind is going to come out. When the devil comes in like a flood and we start feeling sorry for ourselves, we need to be ready with what we’ve been practicing. Our mindset matters – it is what controls you. The mind is what you control. If we don’t control our mind, the devil will control us.

Colossians 3:2 (Amplified Bible) Set your mind and keep focused habitually on the things above [the heavenly things], not on things that are on the earth [which have only temporal value].

Be careful for nothing means don’t worry about anything. If we don’t practice committing things to God by praying, we’ll worry about the elephant in the room that isn’t even there. People lose sleep, health and effective work over worry.

Philippians 4:6-7 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds…

Do you practice thanksgiving and prayer? Our heart will be kept by worry if we don’t cast our cares on the Lord. Thinking on things above keeps you from grumbling. All grumblers are disciples of negative thinking. Negative thinking is a habit that destroys happy living and covers life with gloom, despair, and destruction. Meditate day and night in the word of the Lord.

Psalm 1:1-2 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, he used the word to change what the devil was trying to do. Controlling your mind and meditating on the word is how we conquer the devil. The words of our mouth won’t be right if we don’t meditate on the word. Don’t worry that you can’t do something like so-and-so. Just do the best you can for who you are. What you feed your mind becomes your mindset. You control your mind. How do you start your day? Jesus taught us to start the day with prayer early in the morning. We need to make sure we get alone with God to set our mind right.

Psalm 19:14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength…

God never fails us if we trust him with all our hearts. He told Joshua to be strong and courageous. We need to make sure our mindset is on the word. Meditate day and night so we can do all the Lord asks. We’ll say things we shouldn’t if we don’t.

Joshua 1:5-9 There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them. Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest. This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do…all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither…dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

When Sister Edith’s husband, Brother Gene, went camping with some brothers, someone tried to break into their home. Sister Edith was afraid but she prayed and asked God what to do. He showed her to make a lot of noise. She turned the radio on loud and yelled so the men ran away. God comes to help us when the human tendency to fear comes. God always comes to our rescue. When she was told she had cancer, God brought verses and an instant calm. Proverbs 3:25 “Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh.” And Psalm 112:7 “He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord.” Before God delivered the Israelites out of Egypt, he sent 10 plagues: water turned into blood, frogs in the houses, dust turned into lice, flies were everywhere, animals died in a pestilence, boils, hail, locusts, darkness, and all firstborn were killed (except the Israelites). It took 11 days to get to Canaan that God promised to give them. In that time they murmured, complained, found fault, didn’t like to eat manna but God encouraged them.

Deuteronomy 20:1-4 When thou goest out to battle…and seest horses, and chariots, and a people more than thou, be not afraid of them: for the Lord thy God is with thee, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And…when ye are come nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall…speak unto the people, And shall say…Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them; For the Lord your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

The fruit was truly great in Canaan but they said “nevertheless” and told how hard it was so they promoted fear.

Numbers 13:27-29 And they…said, We came unto the land whither thou sentest us, and surely it floweth with milk and honey; and this is the fruit of it. Nevertheless the people be strong…the cities are walled, and very great: and moreover we saw the children of Anak there. The Amalekites dwell in the land of the south: and the Hittites, and the Jebusites, and the Amorites, dwell in the mountains: and the Canaanites dwell by the sea, and by the coast of Jordan.

Caleb knew what God promised and believed it! The Israelites’ mindset was to have everything easy or say “I can’t handle it!” They had a lot of fear so were fainthearted. They were relying on their own selves. God wants us to rely on him. They thought the enemy was their problem, but their problem was relying on their own strength instead of God. The enemy will always look bigger so we have to focus on God who won’t fail, not our ability. If the enemy brings fear, cast it down.

Numbers 13:30-33 And Caleb stilled the people…said, Let us go…possess it; for we are well able to overcome it. But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger…And they brought up an evil report of the land…saying, The land…eateth up the inhabitants thereof; and all…we saw in it are men of a great stature…giants, the sons of Anak…the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and…in their sight.

The Israelites were all afraid of Goliath. David’s father sent him to take food to his brothers. He said he’d go against Goliath.

I Samuel 17:34-37 And David said…Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb …And I…delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught…and slew him. Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as…them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God…The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and…bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine…

David’s brother was mad that he asked what was to be done to the Philistine. God had delivered David from a lion and bear. He knew it was in God’s strength he would fought Goliath.

I Samuel 17:42-47 And when the Philistine looked about, and saw David, he disdained him: for he was but a youth, and ruddy, and of a fair countenance. And the Philistine said…Am I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves? And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. And…said to David, Come to me, and I will give thy flesh unto the fowls of the air, and to the beasts of the field. Then said David…Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the Lord…God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied. This day will the Lord deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts…that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. And all…shall know that the Lord saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give you into our hands.

We need to know we’re going in the Lord’s strength, not in our own. We have victory when we give the battle to God. Mindset is important. If our mindset is to do things by ourselves, we’ll fail. If our mindset is on Christ, he’ll help us have victory.

Philippians 4:11-13 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.