For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, 4 for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but [b]divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. 5 We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, 6 and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete. 2 Cor 10:3-6 NASB
God Heals What Is Spiritually Damaged
One of the hardest battles to overcome following my wife’s betrayal were the thoughts of her being sexual with the other man. God designed sex within marriage to create a spiritual bond between husband and wife. When a spiritual bond is torn apart, we find ourselves helpless to repair it. That is why God is the only one who can heal what is spiritually damaged.
If you feel totally helpless to overcome the thoughts and images in your mind, you are not alone. These thoughts are like a stronghold in your mind. You feel like a prisoner with no escape. However, there is good news! The weapons God wants to supply you with to overcome these thoughts are “divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses”. You can escape that fortress in your mind and find freedom. I have.
Your Mind Is A Battlefield
Paul states that we can destroy “speculations”. A speculation is better translated as a “reasoning that is hostile to our Christian faith”. Along with the thought of your spouse having sex with someone else come all the reasonings as to “why” they did it: you are not good enough, you are not loved, you are undesirable, etc. My wife tried to explain to me that these thoughts simply were not true and that she did love me, desire me and I was who she really wanted.
The key to overcoming these thoughts is taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. The battlefield is your mind. That is where satan operates to convince you of his lies. God wants you to challenge those thoughts with Spiritual truth. The most powerful weapon you have is the Word of God and His promises. We may live in a human body, with all its sin and weakness, but our battle is not against flesh and blood (Eph 6:12).
Two Ways to Help You Overcome the Thoughts
I have found two things most helpful in overcoming my thoughts: 1) immediately “changing the channel” in my mind, so-to-speak; and 2) reading my Bible daily. The first line of defense is to not entertain those thoughts or give them any power in your mind. My suggestion is that you immediately have good thoughts ready to substitute for the bad one.
For example, one of the most peaceful memories I have in my life is floating in Honolua Bay on Maui while snorkeling. I was floating effortlessly in the water, totally relaxed. I could feel the warm sun beating on my back. The view below me was completely peaceful and calming. I was in awe of God’s creation below the water. I took the initial bad thought “captive” by stopping it and replacing it with something better.
The second helpful step in overcoming my bad thoughts was to replace them with God’s word. This is where you need to do your homework. It is so important to hide God’s Word in your heart so that you may call upon it at any time to help you (Psalm 119:11). My suggestion is that you search and memorize God’s promises and hide them in your heart.
As you practice these principles over time, you renew your mind (Rom 12:2) to win the battle and also determine what God’s will is for your life. God can, and will, break these fortresses in your mind and you will find freedom.
A Few Scriptures Worth Memorizing
“Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.” Rom 12:21
“We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves.” Rom 15:1
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.” 1 Cor 13:4-5
“So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.” 1 Cor 15:58
“For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love.” Gal 5:13
“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” Gal 6:9
“Be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.” Eph 4:32