You Don’t Have to Live This Way!
If our toddler is throwing a fit in the grocery store, we correct him, redirect him—yet we have allowed our minds to have outright meltdowns with zero correction. We walk around acting as if we have no power over what we think about.
Paul tells us that when we take captive our thoughts, we can wield our power for good and for God, slaying strongholds left and right. What incredible power is available to us every moment of every day!
In Romans 8:5, Paul said that “those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh” and that “those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit” (ESV).
I have read and reread this passage in the past few months, mulling over how life would be if I could truly have a mind that dwells on the Spirit. A mind that is full of life and peace. A mind that consistently thinks about God—who He is and what He wants for me. I so desperately want the “perfect peace” God promises when my mind is fixed on Him.
As I’ve been practicing taking every thought captive, shifting my thoughts has become more disciplined. This is a daily battle! I may not be doing it perfectly, but I have seen significant improvement.
Based on Paul’s writings long ago to the church in Rome, you and I can learn to mind our minds to the point that controlling our thoughts becomes reflexive—an automatic, intuitive response.
I want to be so well versed in the patterns of thinking in line with the Spirit that my default is not to rely on the flesh but on the Spirit in everything. This is the goal of our deliberate interruptions: we abruptly stop the crazy spirals of our minds. As we practice the art of interruption, we’re shifting to a whole new mindset, and with each shift we will find ourselves growing more and more into the mind of Christ.
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God. You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ. But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.Romans 8:1-11 NIV
for, “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.1 Cor. 2:16 NIV
You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.Isaiah 26:3 NIV
Father, I set my mind on the things of the Spirit. I set my mind on your peace. I pray to grow more and more into the mind of Christ! Amen.