It is difficult to advance in life without making effort to renew your mind daily with the Word of God. If there is a time to pay more attention to your mind and thoughts, it is now. The scripture says, “For as he thinks within himself, so he is.” (Proverbs 23:7). No person can be greater than how they think. How you think is your worldview; it reflects in every area of your life and determines the outcomes you get in life.
The Root of all Issues in Life
Jesus said, “You aren’t made unholy by eating nonkosher food! It is what you say and think that makes you unclean.” (Matthew 15:11, TLB). The Holy Spirit, speaking through James, also said “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” (James 4:1-3, NIV)
What do you think about? How do you think? Who and what influences your thoughts? Why is that important? Our thoughts become our habits and attitude. How we think becomes our way of life and determines how we act and react to issues of life, including people and situations.
We all have tendencies to act and react in certain ways. Several factors contribute to how we think and act. Some people act and react to issues of life from their past, memories, and experiences; others act out of their fears. But we can all be transformed to think, act and react out of God’s Word and the Love of God. We know that perfect love casts out all fears.
How to Experience Transformation
It is impossible to experience transformation in our life and attitude without first allowing God’s Word to replace the unChristlike ways of thinking we have learned and grown by over the years. Many people read the Bible but they don’t let it renew, affect or correct their minds. The Bible says the Word of God is “inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for showing mistakes, for correcting, and for training character”. (1 Timothy 3:16, CEB).
It is not unusual to read through the devotional notes of many people and all you find there are the promises of God and positive confessions. Yes, those are good, but they are not enough. You should open up your life to the Holy Spirit to address and correct your life. Let him show you your mistakes and correct you. Stop reading the Bible for others, and making sermon notes during personal quiet time. Don’t just read the Bible to make yourself feel good. Like David, say unto God, “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalm 139:23-24, NIV).
No Ascension without Descension
The journey up is often down. Remember that precious words from the mouth of Jesus, “I can guarantee this truth: A single grain of wheat doesn’t produce anything unless it is planted in the ground and dies. If it dies, it will produce a lot of grain” (GW). Read those words in another translation, “I am telling you the truth: a grain of wheat remains no more than a single grain unless it is dropped into the ground and dies. If it does die, then it produces many grains” (GNT). And in one more translation, “I tell you the truth, a grain of wheat must fall to the ground and die to make many seeds. But if it never dies, it remains only a single seed” (John 12:24, NCV).
God gives grace NOT to the proud BUT to the humble. Jesus became the author and finisher of our faith not by the things he enjoyed BUT by the things he suffered. He became our qualified Savior not first by resurrecting and ascending but by death, burial, and being in the grave for three days. There cannot be resurrection and ascension without first descending and experiencing death. What we are however sure about is that “After two days He will revive us; On the third day He will raise us up, That we may live in His sight” (Hosea 6:2, NKJV).
Let God Multiply and Enrich You
If there is a cry we all must make to God today, it is not Lord take me higher, but first Lord take me deeper. Take me through the ground as a seed of kernel and cause me to experience death. Let me experience dying so that I might experience and express the beauty of resurrection and ascension. Death to self and sin so that I can be alive to God in righteousness and holy conduct (Romans 6:11). The time is now.
“Jesus replied that the time had come for him to return to his glory in heaven, and that “I must fall and die like a kernel of wheat that falls into the furrows of the earth. Unless I die I will be alone—a single seed. But my death will produce many new wheat kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives” (John 12:24, TLB).