(Romans 12:2 NLT) 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.
The Bible is very clear in teaching us that the way that we change is by changing the way that we think.
So, if there are behaviors, habits, etc. that we have in our lives, then they can be changed or eliminated by changing the way that we think.
Why is this so important?
(Deuteronomy 30:19-20 NLT) (19) “Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live! (20) You can make this choice by loving the LORD your God, obeying Him, and committing yourself firmly to Him. This is the key to your life. And if you love and obey the LORD, you will live long in the land the LORD swore to give your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.”
The quality of life that we have today is a result of the choices that we made yesterday.
Those choices, either good or bad have been shaped by the decisions that we have made.
The things that exercise the greatest amount of influence in our lives, are the things that help shape the decisions that we make on a regular basis.
(1 Thessalonians 5:23 NIV) (23) May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Your soul is comprised of your mind, will, and your emotions.
How is your soul intended to operate?
- Your Mind
The mind has the God given capacity to perceive and understand and come to a logical conclusion on something.
Measure and evaluate the information that God brings to you
Based on the information that is presented to you make a decision – hopefully the right one.
Two primary sources of input for your mind:
Your body – that lives in this natural temporal world perceiving information through your five physical senses.
Your spirit – which is alive unto God and provides information that cannot come to you through your physical senses but has to do with present and future intent from God.
- Your Will
Based on the information that you are presented you make decisions in your life which determine both the quality of your life and your destiny.
Those decisions can be right or wrong based on the information that we have at that moment and that is why it is sometimes prudent to not make a decision in haste or under pressure.
- Your Emotions
The information or perception that we have about something will invoke an emotional response.
OR Your emotions respond to whatever you spend time thinking about.
Emotions give you momentum towards the things that you have decided to do.
Your mind interacts with your emotions or how you feel to produce desire and desire is the foundation of your decision-making.
Your most consistent behavior will always reflect your strongest desire.
Your desires are based on what you think about that situation and how you feel about that situation.
I think, I feel and therefore I choose.
How Do I Renew My Mind?
So if I want to make better choices for my life that are in line with God’s plan for my life, then I must renew my mind or change my thinking. How do I do that?
Renewing does not mean learning. Paul was writing to people who were Born Again and had a basic knowledge of the Word of God.
(Psalms 131:1-3 NLT) A song for pilgrims ascending to Jerusalem. A psalm of David. LORD, my heart is not proud; my eyes are not haughty. I don’t concern myself with matters too great or too awesome for me to grasp. (2) Instead, I have calmed and quieted myself, like a weaned child who no longer cries for its mother’s milk. Yes, like a weaned child is my soul within me. (3) O Israel, put your hope in the LORD–now and always.
“Hope” in Hebrew means “trust”.
Trust is probably the most important aspect of our relationship with God.
We do not get to a place of trust until we are weaned in our souls.
There are things that your mind says it is dependent on in order to be able to live, be happy, be content and be satisfied in this life.
Your mind will tell you that there are certain things that must be exactly so in order for you to be happy.
The weaning of the mind is a weaning from the dependencies that have to be there in order for you to be happy.
Six things that seem to be most prevalent in most people’s minds that we need to wean our minds from:
- We must wean our minds from trying to figure everything out.
(Proverbs 3:5-7 NIV) Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; (6) in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. (7) Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.
- We must wean ourselves from a losing mentality.
- We must wean ourselves from a selfish thinking.
- We must wean ourselves from pity parties.
(Philippians 4:4 NIV) Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!
- We must wean ourselves from pride.
(John 15:5 NIV) “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
- We must wean ourselves of critical thinking.
(Luke 6:37 MSG) “Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults–unless, of course, you want the same treatment. Don’t condemn those who are down; that hardness can boomerang. Be easy on people; you’ll find life a lot easier.