Philip Arnold is quoted to have observed that “you will never be free until you free yourself from the prison of your own false thoughts”. It is true that when a prisoner is set free after serving time, it takes a lot of adjustment to be free of prison mentality. And, if you have any experience working with people in poverty or homelessness you know that moving out of that situation is complicated by a mindset that will not automatically adapt to the new situation.
One of my favorite psalms is Psalm 139, especially when I think of these words: “You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely”.
Even when prominent public figures say things that shock us, we are reminded that the repository in our subconscious mind can equally shock us. For there is that which we picked up in childhood and from society and environment that will continue to enslave us even in the highest position of leadership. Is it hatred, arrogance, prejudice, or some phobia? What does the Lord – or higher power for the spiritual – see in me that I am not probably seeing?
For the Christian, “it is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery” (Gal. 5:1). For the spiritual, “you will never be free until you free yourself from the prison of your own false thoughts”.
To prosper in any and every area of life, we must be set free, particularly from false thoughts and a negative mindset.