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Power Thinking

Power Thinking

Proverbs 23:7 states, “As a man thinketh within himself, so is he…” Our minds determine our health, success, happiness, wealth, even our salvation as we make a rational decision to accept Christ as Savior. Using Mary Lou Carney’s Power of Positive Thinking for Teens as an additional resource, this class equips students with a biblical base for developing a positive mental attitude. Topics covered in class lectures include controlling the mind, the power of the spoken word, visualization, building strengths, forgiveness, and developing a thankful heart. Weekly reading assignments reinforce these messages and provide further practical tips, such as “10 Steps to Self-Confidence,” “How to Be Liked,” and “Game Plan for Happiness.” Punctuated by short stories, the book relates these themes in a very practical way to the lives of real teenagers.

Lesson 1
Using the analogy of our mind as a manufacturing plant with our thoughts as the raw materials, week 1 lecture discusses the importance of quality control. It is up to each of us to stop truckloads of junk from being dumped into the plant of our mind. (As the old cliché goes… garbage in, garbage out.) Students learn practical tips on controlling their thoughts as well as Scriptures to replace the negative raw materials they have allowed into their minds. Reading for the week covers various types of intelligence such as linguistic, spatial, and interpersonal, and gives examples of careers that fit each particular gifting.

Lesson 2
Class number two proposes that life is a series of open book tests, with God and His Word having the only right answers. From that premise, the lecture delves into prayer and visualization—a very practical tool that we can use as we walk by faith. Youth are encouraged to see and speak success, retelling themselves the victories God has already brought them. Carney’s book gives further tips on prayer, the power of expecting the best, and ways in which we can “create” our own happiness.

Lesson 3
Week 3 builds on the previous classes by talking about two specific hindrances to success—hanging onto past baggage, and having a victim mentality. After explaining what they are and why they will prevent students from achieving success, the discussion turns to positive ways to overcome these hindrances—forgiveness and cultivating a thankful heart. Assigned reading further develops themes of problem solving, conquering fear, and how powerful our imagination is—whether for good or for evil.

Lesson 4
The final class in the Power Thinking series empowers students to develop their strengths and manage their weaknesses. Beginning with a process of elimination, youth are encouraged to think first about all of the things they are not called to do, and then given practical steps to narrow down the things that they seem to show a natural inclination for, as well as enjoy doing. The reading assignment closes with seven steps to say “No” to negative thoughts and “Yes” to positive ones, as well as a list of thought conditioners—powerful, encouraging Scripture passages to be memorized or recited aloud.

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