Ephesians 4:23 – Instead, there must be a spiritual renewal of your thoughts and attitudes.
Change requires new thinking. In order to change, we must learn about God’s truth and start making good choices, but we also must change the way we think.
The battle over sin starts in your mind, not in your behavior. The way you think determines the way you feel, and the way you feel determines the way you act. If you want to change the way you act, you start by changing the way you think. In addition, if you want to change the way you feel, you must start with the way you think.
The renewal of your mind is related to the word “repentance.” Repentance is about changing your mind, learning to think differently. “Repent” simply means to make a mental U-turn. Changing the way you think will then affect your emotions and affect your behavior.
When I repent, I make a mental U-turn. I turn from guilt to forgiveness. I turn from purposelessness to purpose in life. I turn from no hope to new hope. I turn from frustration to freedom. I turn from darkness to light. I turn from hell to heaven. I turn from hatred to love.
I also change the way that I think about God. He’s not mad at me; I’m deeply flawed, but I’m deeply loved. I change the way I think about you, I change the way I think about my friends, and I change the way I think about my wife. I change the way I think about the world, I change the way I think about the economy, and I change the way I think about my past, my present, and my future.
So being renewed in your mind means more than changing the way you think about God and Jesus; it also means you change the way you think about your own defects. The Bible tells us, “Let this same attitude and purpose and [humble] mind be in you which was in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5).
– Where in your life do you need to take the first step of changing the way you think?
– We talked of turning from guilt to forgiveness, from purposelessness to purpose in life, from no hope to new hope. What type of “mental U-turn” do you most need in your life?