Monday, November 16, 2015

Renovations Of The Heart And Mind

Philippians 4:8-9
And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me----everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.

I think that it wasn't a coincidence that Jesus was crucified on a hill called Golgotha.....translated "The Place Of The Skull".
I say that because I think it was a symbolic reminder of where humanities battle is waged. In the heart and in the mind.
Verse in Proverbs states a truth that we all must face...."As a man thinks IN HIS is he."  In other words, the real us is defined by our inner belief's. These dictate to us how we will react to the situations we face daily. They are such a part of us that we have trouble seeing or believing that such really do exist. I am what I think. What I think has been tainted and darkened by the sin/flesh nature that I carry around. 

Part of the recovery discipline is too acknowledge that we have character defects. We realize that these defects are proof of the sin nature we all are born with. At the same time, we approach these defects through working Step #6- We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. So, does God just show up in the middle of the night and sprinkle "whiffle" dust on you and "poof" the defects are gone? No. But there is a work that takes place inside when we allow His Holy Spirit to remove these defects. Scripture calls it "the fruit of the Spirit", or evidence of real change.

Galatians 5:22-23 reads:"But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: Joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is not law against these things.
O.k., we now know what the evidence will be...but exactly how am I changed? What method or thing will the Holy Spirit use to bring this new character into play in my life?

Romans 5:3-5
We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trails, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope does not disappointment. For we know ho dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.

Bingo! We learn to not endure and press on. How can we do this? By the assurance that God is who He claims to be, and that He will do what He has promised us He would do. We hold on and allow Him to direct us through whatever comes our way.What we think or perceive to be bad, God takes and uses it for His good. What was intended to kill us or drive us back into our old lifestyle, God strengthens us to stand against, and not give in.

As we approach life in this manner of learning endurance, we suddenly realize that God is doing for us, what we never could do for ourselves. And that, my friend, is not a bad thing to think on.

God on you...

michael b.

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