Renew Your Mind
July 20, 2021
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Romans 12:2 NLT
Everything we do, for good or evil, begins in our minds. The best thing anyone ever did that affected you began as someone’s thought, and the worst thing that was ever done to you began as a thought. Likewise, anything you’ve done that you regretted and brings shame and regret into your life even years later began as a simple idea in your mind. Every wonderful, great thing that still makes you proud that you did it was birthed in that same place. Our minds are so powerful.
That is why wise King Solomon told us to guard our hearts (minds) because all of life gets its source there (Proverbs 4:23), and the way a person thinks is what makes him (Proverbs 23:7). “Change your mind” is the central message of Jesus’ first sermon. Jesus challenged people to change the way they think because no matter how many times we hear truth, as long as we are hearing it through our biases we will not get it and life will remain the same. We will simply impose our old thoughts and behaviors on our attempt at new life.
Letting God change the way we think by cooperating with Him is a recurring theme in the teachings of Jesus. The word “repent” actually means “to change your mind.” The letters from His friends to the early followers of Jesus reinforced this thought and give us direction. The Roman writer said that the way to prevent ourselves from simply becoming like the world is to let God transform us by “renewing our minds,” or literally changing the way we think. He said that is the path to knowing God’s will for you, which will lead to good, pleasing, and perfect ways. Paul in many places tells us that we change the way we think by actively choosing the kinds of things we think about. In 2 Corinthians 10:5 he tells us forcefully to “demolish the arguments” that would take over our lives, and “take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ.” In Philippians 4:8, he instructs, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Just as forcefully as we reject the thoughts that are not right, we deliberately and powerfully choose the things we will think about. As we consistently do that—we identify a thought that is not appropriate and we replace it with one that is—God renews our mind, and we walk in the greater life He has planned for us.
- “As we think, we change the physical nature of our brain. As we consciously direct our thinking, we can wire out toxic patterns of thinking and replace them with healthy thoughts.” – Dr. Caroline Leaf, Switching on Your Brain
- God created you in HIS image, to live in freedom, love, and grace. What would happen if you renewed your mind and trained it to think this way?