“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 2:5 NKJV.
Thoughts without discipline and direction produce regrets unforeseen.
My thoughts and comments today are about “thoughts and destinations.”
Your mind is a powerful force. Thoughts are the origin of attitudes, desires, beliefs, and behavior. The noblest acts of self-sacrifice, as well as self-centeredness, begin and mature in the mind. The mind is fertile ground for whatever is sown there. “For as [a man] thinks within himself, so he is.” Proverbs 23:7 NASV. Years earlier, I read a simple but powerful statement, “Sow a thought, and reap an action. Sow an action, and reap a habit. Sow a habit, and reap a destiny.” Never start a journey in your thoughts that you don’t want to reach as your destination. Decisions and direction result from your deliberations.
Great achievements begin with a simple, compelling idea, just as unthinkable behavior can begin with unguarded thoughts. God’s indictment of Noah’s generation was severe but accurate, “Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great . . and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually . . but Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” Read Genesis 6:5-8 NKJV. “Every intent of [their] thoughts . . was only evil continually.” Wicked men allowed God nothing He could redeem. Bad behavior and evil lives had its origin in their evil thoughts. Thoughts without discipline and direction produce regrets unforeseen. Noah was different and He found grace. Read Isaiah 55:7-9 NIV.
But there is reason for encouragement. The Bible offers an effective solution, “Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus . . He humbled Himself and became obedient . .” Read Philippians 2:2-11 NKJV. You will not achieve the mind of Christ by your best efforts. However, you can receive the mind of Christ by your sincere welcome. For this reason, Paul assured your victory, “[You] have the mind of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 2:16 NIV.
In the Philippians verses, I see these spiritual elements of the mind of Christ you are to replicate: Godly submission, absolute selflessness, humble service, and willing sacrifice, from which come the promise of God’s recognition and reward. From Jesus, you can learn the joy of yielding your rights and embracing responsibilities. You have the Godly potential to become all that you were created to be. The process is not passive; it’s proactive. Read Colossians 3:1-3 NIV/Galatians 5:19-25 NLT.
The mind is not self-governing; your thought life must be righteously managed. “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ . .” 2 Corinthians 10:4-5 NKJV. Recognize, then cast down and capture every thought process that misdirects you spiritually – such as self-pity, remorse, anger, unforgiveness, disobedience, or such like. Read Romans 8:5-6 NIV.
Here is God’s answer; it’s simple and effective but not easy. “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2 NIV. See Ephesians 4:23-24 NKJV.
My prayer for you today is for an uncluttered mind and thoughts obedient to Christ.