I was browsing YouTube recently, and for some unknown reason, I gravitated toward a 30-minute interview clip with Jane Marczewski, better known as Nightbirde. It was probably before her cancer returned for the third and final time. It’s an amazing and insightful interview filled with some profound statements and honest admissions.
One statement that arrested my attention was about how she controls her thoughts. She described her thoughts as birds flying over in the sky. You can’t really control those kinds of thoughts any more than you can control birds in flight. But you don’t have to let the bird land on your head and build a nest in your hair.
The Apostle Paul says essentially the same thing in a slightly different way. He says that we take every thought captive to make it obedient to Christ. In other words, you don’t let certain negative thoughts linger in your mind until they become habits or mindsets. You bring up every thought, holding it up to the light of the truth of God’s word.
In the same way you doubt your doubts by telling yourself a competing narrative based on God’s truth, you defeat destructive and demeaning thoughts by holding them up against God’s promises and against all the verses about God’s lovingkindness.
You don’t beat yourself up for having angry, fearful, lustful, hateful thoughts that fly above your head, but you don’t have to let those thoughts settle down on you. You can choose to think on better things — noble, pure, right, lovely, admirable things (as Paul says in another of his letters).
If you have 30 minutes to spare, I highly recommend watching the entire interview here: