Renewal of the Mind
I haven’t written in quite some time. It has been about two months, which is certainly unusual for me, but finally I felt God had given me some thoughts again. I think, as I write in this devotion, it was simply about renewing my mind!
Sometimes we let all kinds of things distract us and block our connection to our heart. It can be people, jobs, activities, relationships, and on and on the list goes. I guess I could pinpoint mine to a couple of things, but the choice in which way we move is always up to us. God never moves and always stays the same. I am glad if we choose Him He will always draw us closer to Him.
Recently I was taking some bags out of the car. I had a package of Oreo cookies in the same bag with the bananas. I had forgot to take them out of the car so they had been together for a length of time. As I unloaded the car I could taste the delicious cream in the middle of the Oreo. When I opened the cookies and took a bite of the cream, I was very disappointed. The delicious cream I had craved tasted like bananas. I like bananas but I do not like Oreo’s that taste like bananas. Even though they had never physically touched each other, because the Oreo’s had been in such close proximity to the bananas, they started to smell and taste like bananas. Although they looked the same on the outside they had definitely been altered.
Here is my thought for today. Even though we may not physically be participating in worldly behavior, do we get so close to it that we take on its characteristics? We may appear to be the same on the outside, but have allowed things to taint our values, views, and our attitude. Do we choose to ignore things around us that are unbiblical in order not to offend someone? Do we not speak our mind on subjects because we are afraid of loosing friends? Do we choose to allow our children to participate in things we do not feel comfortable with so they will not feel left out? Do we take on the bad attitude of those around us because we spend too much time with them? The world around us is constantly draining our spiritual life from us. Right now there are numerous subjects being debated. The questions around us are putting Christians in the middle of the fire. Instead of allowing this to be a problem for us we must simply stop and say, “What does the Bible say about it?” If it does not line up with the Word of God, then as Christians, we should not support it nor participate in it.
John 15:18-21 “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. But all these things they will do to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me.
Romans 12:1-2 I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
I love the last verse when it says, “ be transformed by the renewal of your mind”. This is talking about the mental facilities, reasoning, and understanding of our mind. When informed by evil it becomes a source of evil; when informed by the Spirit, it is an instrument of good. The term “transformed” is the Greek word metamorphoo, which forms the root for the English word “metamorphosis”. Paul uses the present tense of this, which indicates this has to be done on a continuous basis. The verb is also passive; implicating God is doing the transforming. Finally, the verb is imperative meaning we have a responsibility. The renewal of our mind takes effort on our part, it does not just happen. Bible.org presents this picture. “While we were sinners we were use to sin that cut deep grooves into our heart and mind like a river cutting a path through rock. Now as Christians we are making new grooves following God’s leadership. In order to make these new grooves permanent, we have to continually renew our mind in those things of Christ by saturating our self in God’s Word, memorizing scripture, communicating with God, and slowing our pace.
As the world begins to close in more and more around us, we must make more time for the renewal of our mind so we will know “what is good and acceptable and perfect” in God’s eyes.