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About the Author
Joyce Meyer is one of the world's leading practical Bible teachers, with her TV and radio broadcast, Enjoying Everyday Life, airing on nearly 450 television networks and 400 radio stations worldwide, including ABC Family Channel, Trinity Broadcast Network, Daystar, and the Word Network.
Her bestselling books include Battlefield of the Mind, Look Great, Feel Great, The Confident Woman, I Dare You, and Never Give Up!
Joyce holds conferences approximately 15 times each year, worldwide, speaking to thousands.
Read an Excerpt
Battlefield of the Mind
By Joyce Meyer
Warner FaithCopyright © 1995 Joyce Meyer
All right reserved.
Chapter OneThe Mind Is the Battlefield
For we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) Sphere EPHESIANS 6:12
From this Scripture we see that we are in a war. A careful study of this verse informs us that our warfare is not with other human beings but with the devil and his demons. Our enemy, Satan, attempts to defeat us with strategy and deceit, through well-laid plans and deliberate deception.
The devil is a liar. Jesus called him ... the father of lies and of all that is false (John 8:44.) He lies to you and me. He tells us things about ourselves, about other people and about circumstances that are just not true. He does not, however, tell us the entire lie all at one time.
He begins by bombarding our mind with a cleverly devised pattern of little nagging thoughts, suspicions, doubts, fears, wonderings, reasonings and theories. He moves slowly and cautiously (after all, well-laid plans take time). Remember, he has a strategy for his warfare. He has studied us for a long time.
He knows what we like and what we don't like. He knows our insecurities, our weaknesses and our fears. He knows what bothers us most. He is willing to invest any amount of time it takes to defeat us. One of the devil's strong points is patience.
TEARING DOWN STRONGHOLDS
For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds,
[Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). 2 Corinthians 10:4,5
Through careful strategy and cunning deceit, Satan attempts to set up "strongholds" in our mind. A stronghold is an area in which we are held in bondage (in prison) due to a certain way of thinking.
In this passage, the Apostle Paul tells us that we have the weapons we need to overcome Satan's strongholds. We will learn more about these weapons later, but right now, please notice that once again we see that we are engaged in warfare, spiritual warfare. Verse 5 shows us clearly the location of the battlefield on which this warfare is waged.
The Amplified Bible translation of this verse says that we are to take these weapons and refute arguments. The devil argues with us; he offers us theories and reasonings. All of this activity goes on in the mind.
The mind is the battlefield.
SUMMARY OF THE SITUATION
Thus, so far we have seen that:
1. We are engaged in a war.
2. Our enemy is Satan.
3. The mind is the battlefield.
4. The devil works diligently to set up strongholds in our mind.
5. He does it through strategy and deceit (through well-laid plans and deliberate deception).
6. He is in no hurry; he takes his time to work out his plan.
Let's examine his plan more clearly through a parable.
Mary and her husband, John, are not enjoying a happy marriage. There is strife between them all the time. They are both angry, bitter and resentful. They have two children who are being affected by the problems in the home. The strife is showing up in their school work and behavior. One of the children is having stomach problems caused by nerves.
Mary's problem is that she doesn't know how to let John be the head of their home. She is bossy-she wants to make all the decisions, handle the finances and discipline the children. She wants to work so she will have her "own" money. She is independent, loud, demanding and a nag.
About now you may be thinking, "I've got her answer. She needs to know Jesus."
She does know Him! Mary received Jesus as her Savior five years ago-three years after she and John were married.
"Do you mean there hasn't been a change in Mary since receiving Jesus as Savior?"
Yes, there has been change. She believes she is going to heaven even though her bad behavior causes her to feel constant condemnation. She has hope now. Before she met Jesus, she was miserable and hopeless; now she is just miserable.
Mary knows that her attitude is wrong. She wants to change. She has received counseling from two people, and she gets in almost every prayer line asking for victory over anger, rebellion, unforgiveness, resentment and bitterness. Why hasn't she seen more improvement?
The answer is found in Romans 12:2: Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].
Mary has strongholds in her mind. They have been there for years. She doesn't even understand how they got there. She knows she shouldn't be rebellious, bossy, nagging, etc., but she doesn't know what to do to change her nature. It seems that she simply reacts in certain situations in an unseemly way because she can't control her actions.
Mary can't control her actions because she doesn't control her thoughts. She doesn't control her thoughts because there are strongholds in her mind that the devil set up early in her life.
Satan begins to initiate his well-laid plans and to sow his deliberate deception at a very young age. In Mary's case, her problems started long ago, in childhood.
As a child Mary had an extremely domineering father who often spanked her just because he was in a bad mood. If she made one wrong move, he would vent his anger on her. For years, she suffered helplessly as her father mistreated her and her mother. He was disrespectful in all his ways toward his wife and daughter. Mary's brother, however, could do no wrong. It seemed as if he was favored just because he was a boy.
By the time she was sixteen, Mary had been brain-washed for years by Satan who had told her lies that went something like this: "Men really think they are something. They are all alike; you can't trust them. They will hurt you and take advantage of you. If you're a man, you've got it made in life. You can do anything you want. You can order people around, be the boss, treat people any way you please and nobody (especially not wives or daughters) can do anything about it."
As a result, Mary's mind was resolved: "When I get away from here, nobody is ever going to push me around again!"
Satan was already waging war on the battlefield of her mind. Play those thoughts over and over in your head a hundred thousand times or more over a period of ten years, and see if you're ready to get married and become a sweet, submissive, adoring wife. Even if by some miracle you should want to be, you won't know how. This is the kind of mess in which Mary finds herself today. What can she do? What can any of us do in such a situation?
THE WEAPONS OF THE WORD
... If you abide in My word [hold fast to My teachings and live in accordance with them], you are truly My disciples.
And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free. John 8:31,32
Here Jesus tells us how we are to win the victory over the lies of Satan. We must get the knowledge of God's truth in us, renew our minds with His Word, then use the weapons of 2 Corinthians 10:4,5 to tear down strongholds and every high and lofty thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God.
These "weapons" are the Word received through preaching, teaching, books, tapes, seminars and private Bible study. But we must "abide" (continue) in the Word until it becomes revelation given by inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Continuing is important. In Mark 4:24 Jesus says, ... The measure [of thought and study! you give [to the truth you hear] will be the measure [of virtue and knowledge] that comes back to you.... I repeat, we must continue using the weapon of the Word.
Two other spiritual weapons available to us are praise and prayer. Praise defeats the devil quicker than any other battle plan, but it must be genuine heart praise, not just lip service or a method being tried to see if it works. Also, praise and prayer both involve the Word. We praise God according to His Word and His goodness.
Prayer is relationship with the Godhead. It is coming and asking for help or talking to God about something that bothers us.
If you want to have an effective prayer life, develop a good personal relationship with the Father. Know that He loves you, that He is full of mercy, that He will help you. Get to know Jesus. He is your Friend. He died for you. Get to know the Holy Spirit. He is with you all the time as your Helper. Let Him help you.
Learn to fill your prayers with the Word of God. God's Word and our need is the basis on which we come to Him.
So, our weapons are the Word used in various ways. As Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians, our weapons are not carnal (fleshly) weapons; they are spiritual. We need spiritual weapons because we are fighting master spirits, yes, even the devil himself. Even Jesus used the weapon of the Word in the wilderness to defeat the devil. (Luke 4:1-13.) Each time the devil lied to Him, Jesus responded with, "It is written," and quoted him the Word.
As Mary learns to use her weapons, she will begin to tear down the strongholds that have been built in her mind. She will know the truth that will set her free. She will see that not all men are like her earthly father. Some are, but many are not. Her husband, John, is not. John loves Mary very much.
The other side of the story involves John. He, too, has problems that are a contributing factor to the situation he and Mary face in their marriage, home and family.
John should be taking his position as head of the family God intends for him to be the priest of his home. John is also born again and knows the proper order for family life. He knows that he should not allow his wife to run the household, the finances, the children and him. He knows all this, but he doesn't do anything about it except feel defeated and retreat into TV and sports.
John is hiding from his responsibility because he hates confrontation. He prefers to take a passive attitude, thinking, "Well, if I just leave this situation alone, perhaps it will work itself out." Or, he excuses himself from taking real action by saying, "I'll pray about it." Of course, prayer is good, but not if it is merely a way of avoiding responsibility.
Let me clarify what 1 mean when I say that John should assume his God-given position in the home. I don't mean that he should her come on like "Mr. Macho," ranting and raving about his authority, Ephesians 5:25 teaches that a man should love his wife as Christ loved the Church. John needs to take responsibility, and with responsibility comes authority. He should be firm with his wife-loving but firm. He should reassure Mary that even though she was hurt as a child, as she releases herself to God through trusting Him, she will gain confidence that not all men are like her father was.
John should be doing a lot of things; but like Mary, he also has "mindsets" that open the door for the devil to hold him captive. There is also a battle going on in John's mind. Like Mary, he was verbally abused in childhood. His domineering mother had a sharp tongue and frequently said hurtful things to him, things like: "John, you're such a mess; you'll never amount to anything."
John tried hard to please his mother because he craved her approval (as all children do); but the harder he tried, the more mistakes he made. He had a habit of being clumsy, so his mother told him all the time what a "klutz" he was. Of course, he dropped things because he was trying so hard to please that it made him nervous, and so he defeated his purpose.
He also experienced some unfortunate rejection from children with whom he desired to be friends. This type of thing happens to most of us at some time in our lives, but it devastated John because he already felt rejected by his mother.
And there was a girl whom he really liked in his early high school years who rejected him for another boy By the time all of these things had tallied up in John's life, and the devil had worked on him, building strongholds in his mind for years and years, John simply had no courage to be anything but quiet, shy and withdrawn.
John is a low-key type person who simply chooses not to make waves. For years he has been having thoughts directed into him that go something like this: "There is no point in telling anyone what you think; they won't listen anyway. If you want people to accept you, you just need to go along with whatever they want."
The few times he tried to stand his ground on an issue, it seemed that he always ended up losing, so he finally decided that confrontation wasn't worth the effort.
"I'm going to lose anyway in the end," he reasoned, "so why even start anything?
WHAT IS THE ANSWER?
The Spirit of the Lord [is] upon Me, because He has anointed Me [the Anointed One, the Messiah] to preach the good news (the Gospel) to the poor; He has sent Me to announce release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to send forth as delivered those who are oppressed [who are downtrodden, bruised, crushed, and broken down by calamity],
To proclaim the accepted and acceptable year of the Lord [the day when salvation and the free favors of God profusely abound]. Luke 4:18,19
With John and Mary's conflicting problems, it is not too hard to imagine what their home life is like. Remember, I said there was a lot of strife in it. Strife isn't always open warfare. Many times, strife is an angry undercurrent in the home that everyone knows is there, but nobody deals with. The atmosphere in their home is terrible, and the devil loves it!
What will happen to John and Mary and their children? Will they make it? They are Christians-it would be a shame to see their marriage fail and their family ruined. Actually, though, it is up to them. John 8:31,32 will be a key Scripture passage in their decision. If they continue to study God's Word, they will know the truth, and acting on the truth will set them free. But they must each face the truth about themselves and their past as God reveals it to them.
The truth is always revealed through the Word; but sadly, people don't always accept it.
Excerpted from Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer Copyright © 1995 by Joyce Meyer. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
First to know, this is a religious-based book. The author, Joyce Meyer, is a popular Christian author and speaker. Her television and radio programs air in many languages and countries. She has also written many books on Christianity, this being one of the more popular.
"Battlefield of the Mind: Winning the Battle in Your Mind" is about solving some of the common problems we all encounter in life, such as depression, anger, or worry, by getting you to examine the way you think about things, or as the book puts it, "you need to begin to think about what you are thinking about." And that's basically the goal of the whole book.
Other major points include:
-our actions are a direct result of our thoughts.
-thoughts take place in your mind, so your mind is in essence "the battlefield"
-if you have a negative mind, you will have a negative life
-on the other hand, if you renew you mind according to God's Word, you will have a positive life
Much of the book is devoted to getting the reader to change their thinking and discusses how to tear down the "strongholds" that the devil tries to set up in the mind. Joyce uses parables and many personal examples along the way- which makes the book very interesting to read.
In sum, if you're stuck in a rut for any number of reasons, and are looking for a book with a religious tone to help you out- I think its a good choice. Also recommend "Finding Happiness in a Frustrating World". Peace.
This book was amazing!!!!! I have been going through a lot with feeling worthless after a heartbreaking divorce. Instead of reaching out to drugs, I made a decision to lean on God for help. I have been reading so many books. I must say this book is NUMBER ONE on my list. If you are going through a hard time and you seem to keep your mind focused on the problem and everything bad, this book is for you. It talks about how the enemy (with you not even realizing) can come in a make matters worse by thinking negative. It even go into detail about how being critical and judgemental towards others can hinder you. She also talk about real life situtions in each topic so you can better understand what is she is trying to say. I had to put the book down so many times because not only was i seeing myself as I read the book, but it was really a lot to digest (in a good way). I had to start thinking in a way to overcome my sitution. This book....no the author of this book has really help me out. I thank God for this women, she is a true inspiration. This book is highly recommended for anybody because we all can benefit from it. As of matter of fact, I am going to order a few of these books for a some of my family who i know will recieve a lot from it.
I have been a Christian for over 20 years and learn new things everyday. This book is one of my favorites. Joyce Meyer is like everyday people and I respect a lot of what she says because she uses her life experiences. Its not just about her telling you what to do or how we should do it because we are Christians. Because if God says it, that should be enough right? Well, God does say it and I hear it from her how she used to be even after she was saved. Its so encouraging the things in this book. I recommend it to everyone, even non-Christians. It will change your life and the way you think about things. It happened to me in the very first chapter. The more I read this uplifting and encouraging book the more I want to read it again and again. Joyce Meyer is a great author and teacher. I think this is one of her best books by far. God has anointed her to share things with His people and she does it in every way she can, teaching, books, prayer and the list goes on and on. I have never seen her in person, but reading her books I feel as though I know her as a close and trusted friend. Isn't that what God wants us to do? He is my close and trusted friend and He knows what I need and He finds ways to see that I receive it in any avenue. God is awesome. Read this book and see what God wants for you and how you can receive the promises He has for you - all of us. Be blessed my brothers and sisters in Christ!
A friend recently suggested I read some of Joyce Meyer's books. Since I am frequently on the road, I purchased her workshop CD set titled Armed and Dangerous. I can't say enough good things about this set. I then purchased The Battlefield of the Mind. Wonderful! Joyce has helped me understand how certain strongholds in my life and mind have been a significant part in why I haven't moved towards a deeper relationship with Christ. Battlefield of the Mind teaches you how to break free of negative thinking and have a mind which is no longer held in bondage. I have learned that, through Christ, I have the power to change my thoughts and have a mind that is FREE! Thank you, Joyce, for allowing God to use you in a way that is helping others to live a life that will bring honor and glory to our Heavenly King. I SO look forward to meeting you in heaven and giving you a big hug! Your sis in Christ, Sandi.
This book is full of information to really help you in your walk with God.It taught me how to be aware of my thoughts and how easy and often the enemy can minipulate our thinking. Our emotions and what we do follows our thinking, so if we guard our thinking and line it up with God's Word we will live a victorious life. Thank-you Joyce for writing this book, and sharing your insight with us!
This book changed my life. I never felt so happy to see the chains in my life broken after reading this book. I showed signs of OCD after years of bad thinking. This gave me the insight of things that I normally thought they were normal thoughts, but didn¿t know that they would cause the enemy to make them as a stronghold. I have become a better Christian, and moreover closer to the lord. I would highly recommend this book to anyone whose life became miserable like mine due to bad thoughts. This book is a clear example of how the lord is sometimes the only answer when one is at crossroads.
Joyce once again went right to the soul of the matter, adding just the right touch of scripture, not so preachy that it couldn't be appreciated by those who are not of the faith. Well written. A great tool to take control of your thoughts and not let them continue to take control over you. This is a great mind washing tool, and I don't mean brainwashing, but an aide to recognizing loose thoughts and replacing them with the power words of scripture.
Joyce Meyer's really does an awesome job highlighting and challenging one's spirit in living in the word and taking charge over your thoughts. I would recommend this book to Teenagers, Young Adults and anyone with a desire to learn more about control of self. I think this is a great book for a reading club, or just two friends getting together. It would be great as a stocking stuffer on Christmas, or a gift bag item to someone sick in shut in or just going through something. GREAT Book!
This is by far the best book I have ever read! Joyce Meyer really knows her stuff. She is down to earth and speaks in plain english makes it easy to understand. I would recommend this book to EVERYBODY! I think this book is a life changer! I don't know how anyone can get through life without reading this book! Three cheers for Joyce Meyer!!!!!
Joyce Meyer provides an insight to life from the perspective of a person that has lived it and won. In this book, she reminds us that if we can win the battle in our minds, we can achieve anything. I'd also suggest that you buy another book called "When God Stopped Keeping Score." It's an intimate look at the power of God and forgiveness. Given the chance, it too will change your life.
As a fan of Joyce Meyer, forgive me for wanting to sing her praises. She proves in everything that she writes that she has a true connection with God. It is through her words and efforts that millions are able to see the light. I just love her so. For anyone who feels bound by their anger, guilt, hurt or pain, I also recommend "When God Stopped Keeping Score." I thought that the book was just about forgiveness, I soon learned, it was about so much more than that. I was about how you should deal with friends, family and yourself and more importantly, how to keep these relationships strong when things go wrong. Having read it, I feel like a better person. Maybe because this book spoke to me and not down to me. I have read a lot of books that was written like I didn't know anything. What the author of "When God Stopped Keeping Score" does is talk to you like a friend. I needed that. You will understand why when you read it.
God took me through with this book. He used Mrs Meyer to put me through the wringer. I have never before read a book that has made me sad, angry, frustrated, unsure, convicted, depressed and then at the same token gave me peace, tranquility, assurity in God's love and set me on the straight and narrow to find God and be closer to Him. There were times I had to put the book down, because I was just not ready for what I was about to read. I couln't digest it because I wanted to be me. I came back, determined to finish it. At least I would get to the end and see where God would lead me. Sure enough, today, as I finished the book I ended in prayer, and joy and love In Christ. I will re-read it because anything worthily written deserves a re-read, to clean up anything I did not absorb, but I must say, the trial and tribulations I went through emotionally and mentally were amazing, but God has proven to be faithful and see me through. If I woukd just comit to listening to all it had to say and face me, then I could better yet see HIM. How awesome is that? read this book and be prepared for a bumpy ride. But God is always there. Take it all to Him and he will never fail.
A useful book for growing Christians. Often, there are some who come to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior but go on with such hang up's that they never excel in their walk with Christ. Stinking thinking plagues us all and has to be combated in order for the Christian to live to their full capacity. Some chapters might not pertain to you but read them anyway and save the knowledge for a rainy day. p.s. this book works best when one decides to choose Christ.
when I was so down in my Christian life I picked up this book began to read it and started my journey back to sharing my life with the Lord. I also recommend Joyce Meyer book on prayer.
Finally, a book that helps you focus your mind the way that God wants your mind to be. This book will change your life. I'd also recommend that you buy "When God Stopped Keeping Score," an intimate look at the power of God and forgiveness. Another great book that will change your life.
I did not want this book to end. I took notes to remember parts that were so helpful to me
Joyce Meyer combines scripture and psychology like no other.
I recomend this book to everybody that their thoughts are going through a war! I felt so blessed after reading it!
I never realized how much we could truly be held in bondage from things that have happened in our past....our childhood upbringing, hurtful relationships, people we should or shouldn't allow into the front seat of our lives, etc., until I read this book. If you don't tune your heart and mind into Gods and let him cleanse you and renew your mind on a DAILY basis, you are subject to constant attacks from the Enemy. This book also helped me recognize firsthand when those attacks begin and the impact it has on your spirit if you choose to listen. All I can say is WOW. Joyce is anointed and God is truly using her for the advancement and glorification of his kingdom. If you want/need help, if you're tired of being tired, if you hunger and thirst for righteousness' sake...YOU NEED TO GET THIS BOOK AND READ IT AS OFTEN AS YOU NEED. While you're at it, buy a few for some other people too.
Blessing to me! I needed this!
Very good points, awesome ideas and can really make you think in the riht direction. However if it were not for the video I would never have gotten throuh it. She is a much better speaker than a writter. Just really a dull read and very repetitave.
Awesome book. Very straight forward and to the point. I will read this book over and over!
Had some good points,wasn't what I was hopeing for.
I have struggled with anger and trying to manage and supervise large numbers of people with firm love. I am still studying this book - moving back and forth between the Bible passages, my own journal reflections and Bible study, and renewed study of Joyce's Wilderness Mentalities as I go. I work hard not to read it too quickly so that I don't skim over a pearl - such as throwing my pearls to swine when my anger tosses love to Satan by wasting it in resentment... How often do I do that???!!! I will continue to study this book as I continue to try and serve my secular students and staff with Christian love ... and return to my all important family without the pent up frustration of a garbled day. Thank you, Joyce....