What’s On Your Mind?

“For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God” (‭‭Romans‬ ‭8:6-8‬ ‭ESV‬‬).

Have you ever been so deep in thought that you found yourself staring blankly at absolutely nothing? Or has your mind ever been so occupied that you arrived at your destination with no memory of the drive that got you there?

I’m certain you can recall a time when you were so focused on something that the walls falling down around you would fail to distract you. Perhaps while binge watching Netflix (guilty as charged!).

Our minds are so wondrously complex, allowing us to either zone out or focus intensely. This is a good thing…and a bad thing. On the one hand we can perform monotonous tasks without thinking about them, allowing us to direct our attention to something more pleasant. On the other hand, this can mean that we develop bad habits without realizing it. Alternately, we can be so focused on one thing, by choice or requirement, that we miss out on seeing more important things.

If you haven’t already noticed, the subtitle of this blog is Musings of a Mindful Disciple. I’ll admit that there’s actually a bit of a redundancy there. For I believe that in order to be a disciple we necessarily must live mindfully. There’s really no way for disciples to live on autopilot or to give their attention singularly to one aspect of faith and/or life while ignoring all else.

It was never in God’s plan for us to be stationary. It’s always been his plan for us to move forward toward maturity (Hebrews 6:1). Some call it “holiness”, but in its simplest form holiness isn’t about adherence to a set of rules. Maturity implies, not only that we don’t allow ourselves to mindlessly follow said rules, but also that we have come to see them, not as rules to be obeyed, but as a lifestyle that is reasonable and rational.Paul put it this way, “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways” (1 Corinthians 13:11 ESV).

Our text today makes it clear that our physical or emotional comfort must be subjected to the Holy Spirit. Yes, we have to do our jobs, ministry or secular. “If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10 ESV). But if we set our minds on a comfortable life, then all we will have is a comfortable life.

If, however, we concern ourselves with the things of the Spirit, being not “conformed to this world, but {by being] transformed by the renewal of [our] mind[s]” (Romans 12:2 ESV), allowing the Holy Spirit to mold and shape us as he desires, then we will have life and peace, now, and in the world to come. In fact, this is the only way we can truly please God.

Of course, our minds will wander and our thoughts will drift–a product of the fall–but living mindfully by the direction and power of the Holy Spirit involves bringing every “thought captive to obey Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5 ESV). When we gave our lives to Christ, we gave our lives to Christ.

What’s on your mind?

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