Posts Tagged ‘metamorphosis’

Lose your mind: renew your mind

April 28, 2017

Philippians 2--5

The Verse of the Day for April 28, 2017 comes from Philippians 2:5-8 in the familiar King James Version:

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

The opening phrase of the passage offers this exhortation to believers in the Amplified Bible:

Philippians 2:5 (AMP)

Let this same attitude and purpose and [humble] mind be in you which was in Christ Jesus: [Let Him be your example in humility:]

The expression brings to mind similar words of encouragement “to put on the Lord Jesus Christ” and “to be renewed in the spirit of your mind.” Believers must learn to put off their former way of thinking and put on or develop new thinking habits or patterns based on the Word of God.

I recall an experience when I first began studying and applying the Scriptures in my life in a serious and consistent manner. I was in the Army, and one of my buddies noticed how intently I studied the Bible, as I shared my enthusiasm for what I was learning. One day he pulled me to the side and said in a serious manner, “Johnson, if you keep studying that Bible so much, you’re going to lose your mind.” Immediately I was offended and remarked, “I studied harder and for a longer period of time when I was in college, and I didn’t lose my mind. Why do you think it’s going to happen to me now?” I dismissed his remarks and kept on pursuing spiritual principles, applying them to my daily life. After a short period of time, however, his words came true. I did start to lose my mind, but I also recognized that I had replaced my old mindset with a new way of thinking, as I put on the mind of Christ.

This ongoing, lifelong spiritual process is called “renewing the mind.” Christians are instructed not to be conformed to the thinking patterns of the world but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds (Romans 12:2).

This section of scripture is associated with the familiar process of metamorphosis. Translated from the Greek word metamorphoo, the phrase is also used to express that as believers strive to manifest more of Christ in their lives, they are also “changed” into the same image by means of this ongoing process.

Butterflies as they undergo metamorphosis are transformed from egg to larva or caterpillar to chrysalis (cocoon) to butterfly (adult). Christian believers also continually undergo a similar spiritual transformation as they mature in Christ. The essence of this amazing process is expressed this way:

We put off the old, put on the new, and leave the past behind.

As we follow Christ, we are renewed in the spirit of our mind.

As believers, we are encouraged to change of our minds and develop new thinking patterns. We are to put off the old man and to put on the new man, as we put away lying or any other ungodly practices. We personally apply these principles of renewing our minds when we determine that we will change directions in our lives and start following this directive to

Put off, put on, put away

And do not be conformed to this,

but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,

that you may prove what is that good and acceptable

 and perfect will of God.

Romans 12:2 (NKJV)

 

Moving in the opposite spirit, not in hate

But walking in love, being kind, tenderhearted;

Not being anxious but learning to patiently wait;

To quench the fiery tongue before it gets started;

Never spewing venom but with our mouths confess

The truth of the Word of God that we might make known

What God declares we are, to always seek to bless

And reap a great harvest from good seed being sown;

To reverse the curse and counter iniquity,

God orders our steps, and we choose the path of peace:

Not to seeking revenge but forgiving each enemy,

For all giving assures that favor will increase;

Renewed in the spirit of our mind night and day,

Being transformed “to put off, put on, put away.”

Jody McBryer concludes with a powerful rendering of “The Mind of Christ”:

 

 

 

Renewing the mind

October 14, 2016

romans-12-2

From Romans 12:2 in the New Living Translation comes the Verse of the Day for October 14, 2016.

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

The Amplified Bible puts it this way:

Romans 12:2

And do not be conformed to this world [any longer with its superficial values and customs], but be transformed and progressively changed [as you mature spiritually] by the renewing of your mind [focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His plan and purpose for you].

For most of the years of my adult life as a believer, I recognized the importance of the opening verses of Romans 12 and committed this passage to memory. In my understanding of these verses, I thought of “the renew mind” as something that believers had to obtain or lay hold of. Later, I read the passage more closely and recognized that the reference emphasizes “the renewing of the mind.”

This section of scripture is associated with the familiar process of metamorphosis that butterflies and other organisms undergo. Christians are instructed not to be conformed but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds. The New Testament phrase is translated from the Greek word metamorphoo, from which the English word metamorphosis is derived. The phrase is also used to express that as believers strive to manifest more of Christ in their lives, they are also “changed” into the same image by means of this ongoing process.

Butterflies, as they undergo metamorphosis, are transformed from egg to larva or caterpillar to chrysalis (cocoon) to butterfly (adult). Christian believers also continually undergo a similar spiritual transformation as they mature in Christ. The essence of this amazing process is expressed in this poem:

The Key to Renewing the Mind

Do not lie to one another, for you have stripped off the old   

(unregenerate) self with its evil practices,

 And have clothed yourselves with the new [spiritual self],    

which is [ever in the process of being] renewed and remolded into   

 [fuller and more perfect knowledge upon] knowledge after            

the image (the likeness) of Him Who created it.

Colossians 3:9-10 (AMP)

We know that the key to power is renewing the mind,

But to find the key to release this power help us to see,

For we seek to walk in power and excel and not be left behind,

As we strive to know deeper levels of intimacy.

With laser precision we now target our old nature

And put to death and mortify our members once for all.

We respond in obedience in answer to God’s call;

Not conformed, we transform ourselves, to become new, mature.

In the secret place of the Lord who ever inhabits

The praises of His people, here we desire to abide,

To put off the old man, vile, corrupt, wrapped in sinful pride

And put on the new man, as one changes garments, habits.

Above all we put on compassionate love from the start

And abide in our hiding place, filled with a grateful heart.

Integrity Music offers this Scripture Memory Song “Do not be conformed Romans 12:1-2 and Ephesians 4:23”:

Let this mind: Renewing the mind

April 28, 2016

Philippians-2 5-7

The Verse of the Day for April 28, 2016 comes from Philippians 2:5-8 (KJV):

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

The opening phrase brings to mind one of the first scripture memory songs that I wrote:

Let This Mind Be in You

Let this mind be in you
Which was also in Christ Jesus.

Let this mind be in you
Which was also in Christ Jesus.

Let this mind be in you
Which was also in Christ Jesus.

Let this mind . . .
Let this mind . . .
Let this mind be in you.

God gets no pleasure
In forcing us to obey.
But He wants us to follow Him
His spirit leads the way.

Let this mind . . .
Let this mind . . .
Let this mind be in you.

We say we are waiting,
Waiting on God to move,
But we’re the ones God’s waiting on,
His perfect will to prove.

Let this mind . . .
Let this mind . . .
Let this mind be in you.

Now don’t keep God waiting.
He wants to reign in you.
Ask yourself what is God waiting
For you to let Him do?

Let this mind . . .
Let this mind . . .
Let this mind be in you.

The first part of the Verse of the Day and the accompanying song also bring to mind the spiritual process known as “renewing the mind.” In nature we note this process of metamorphosis that butterflies and other organisms undergo, reminding us that, similarly, Christians are instructed not to be conformed but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds (Romans 12:1). The New Testament phrase is translated from the Greek word metamorphoo, from which the English word metamorphosis is derived. The phrase is also used to express that as believers strive to manifest more of Christ in their lives, they are “changed” into the same image.

This ongoing process reveals we have within us the power to transform our lives as we renew our minds. We hear the statement: “The renewed mind is the key to power”; however, one may ask, “What is the key to renewed mind?” This question is answered in the following way:

The Key to the Renewed Mind

Do not lie to one another, for you have stripped off the old
(unregenerate) self with its evil practices,
And have clothed yourselves with the new [spiritual self],
which is [ever in the process of being] renewed and remolded into
[fuller and more perfect knowledge upon] knowledge after
the image (the likeness) of Him Who created it.

Colossians 3:9-10 (Amplified Bible)

It has been said that the key to power is the renewed mind,
But what is the key to the renewed mind? Help us to see,
For we seek to walk in power and excel and not be left behind,
As we strive to know levels of deepest intimacy.
With laser precision we target the old man nature
And put to death and mortify our members once for all.
We respond in obedience in answer to God’s call;
Not conformed, but we transform ourselves, as we mature.
In the secret place of the Lord who ever inhabits
The praises of His people, here we desire to abide,
To put off the old man, vile, corrupt, wrapped in sinful pride
And put on the new man, as one changes garments, habits.
Above all we put on compassionate love from the start
And abide in our hiding place, filled with a grateful heart.

We end with a scripture memory song based on Philippians 2:3-15

Not conformed but transformed

October 14, 2015

Romans 12-2Taken from Romans 12:2 (NLT) the Verse of the Day for October 14, 2015 speaks of being transformed in a previous blog entry that is revised and re-posted below:

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

The Amplified Bible renders the verse this way:

Romans 12:2:

And do not be conformed to this world [any longer with its superficial values and customs], but be transformed and progressively changed [as you mature spiritually] by the renewing of your mind [focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His plan and purpose for you].

Romans 12:2 brings to mind the process of metamorphosis that butterflies and other organisms undergo, reminding us of a similar spiritual process called “renewing the mind.” Christians are instructed not to be conformed but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds (Romans 12:1). The New Testament phrase is translated from the Greek word metamorphoo, from which the English word metamorphosis is derived. The phrase is also used to express that as believers strive to manifest more of Christ in their lives, they are also “changed” into the same image:

And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image. (2 Corinthians 3:18)

Butterflies as they undergo metamorphosis are transformed from egg to larva or caterpillar to chrysalis (cocoon) to butterfly (adult). Christian believers also continually undergo a similar spiritual transformation as they mature in Christ. The essence of this amazing process is expressed in this poem:

Death to the Caterpillar

Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat

falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone;

but if it dies, it produces much grain.

John 12:24

 

What is death to the caterpillar we call a butterfly —

Anonymous

From the dark of earth new life stems from seeds once sown.

Despite the pain of loss and our questioning why,

From the source of life this eternal truth is shown:

“Death to the caterpillar we call a butterfly.”

Creation travails until the sons of God appear;

No longer conformed, we have at last been set free,

As every Kingdom mystery is now made clear,

Totally transformed into glorious liberty.

Triumphant in the race we desired to win:

From victory to victory and glory to glory,

We see that power to change comes from within,

As we write another chapter of our life’s story.

The final stage of glory unfolds this result:

Transformed from egg to larva to pupa to adult.

The following video offers a graphic visual illustration of this amazing process:

Here is a scripture memory song of Romans 12:2 offered in a style reminiscent of the Beatles:

The Verse of the Day we can apply every day, as we are being transformed while renewing our minds, proving what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Romans 12:1: a living sacrifice

October 29, 2014

Romans-12-1-2The Verse of the Day for October 29, 2014 is found in Romans 12: 1. Verses 1 and 2 became the focal point of a blog entry posted two weeks ago, which is revised and re-posted below. The topic of the passage relates to “renewing the mind: an ongoing process.” Two weeks later, we are still in the process of renewing our minds, and so it will be until Christ returns when we shall experience the ultimate transformation.

The Amplified Bible offers this expanded rendering of Romans 12:1-2:

1I appeal to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.

Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].

This passage brings to mind the process of metamorphosis that butterflies and other organisms undergo, reminding us of a similar spiritual process called “renewing the mind.” Christians are instructed not to be conformed but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds (Romans 12:1). The New Testament phrase is translated from the Greek word metamorphoo, from which the English word metamorphosis is derived. The phrase is also used to express that as believers strive to manifest more of Christ in their lives, they are also “changed” into the same image.

Blue longwing butterflyButterflies as they undergo metamorphosis are transformed from egg to larva or caterpillar to chrysalis (cocoon) to butterfly (adult). Christian believers also continually undergo a similar spiritual transformation as they mature in Christ. The essence of this amazing process is expressed in this poem:

Death to the Caterpillar

Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat

falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone;

but if it dies, it produces much grain.

John 12:24

 

What is death to the caterpillar we call a butterfly.

— Anonymous

From the dark of earth new life stems from seeds once sown.

Despite the pain of loss and our questioning why,

From the source of life this eternal truth is shown:

“Death to the caterpillar we call a butterfly.”

Creation travails until the sons of God appear;

No longer conformed, we have at last been set free,

As every Kingdom mystery is now made clear,

Totally transformed into glorious liberty.

Triumphant in the race we desired to win:

From victory to victory and glory to glory,

We see that power to change comes from within,

As we write another chapter of our life’s story.

The final stage of glory unfolds this result:

Transformed from egg to larva to pupa to adult.

The accompanying video shows a butterfly emerging from a chrysalis.

The Verse of the Day reminds us that as we renew our minds, we prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Listen to the Romans 12-1-2 Song “A Living Sacrifice” (Christian Scripture Praise Worship Song with Lyrics).

Renewing the mind: Ongoing process

October 14, 2014

Romans 12-2

The Verse of the Day for October 14, 2014 is found in Romans 12:2 (KJV):

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Verse 2 follows verse one which makes the following request:

Romans 12:1 (KJV):

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

The Amplified Bible offers this expanded rendering of these two verses:

1I appeal to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.

Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].

This passage brings to mind the process of metamorphosis that butterflies and other organisms undergo, reminding us of a similar spiritual process called “renewing the mind.” Christians are instructed not to be conformed but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds (Romans 12:1). The New Testament phrase is translated from the Greek word metamorphoo, from which the English word metamorphosis is derived. The phrase is also used to express that as believers strive to manifest more of Christ in their lives, they are also “changed” into the same image

Green Malachite Butterfly

Butterflies as they undergo metamorphosis are transformed from egg to larva or caterpillar to chrysalis (cocoon) to butterfly (adult). Christian believers also continually undergo a similar spiritual transformation as they mature in Christ. The essence of this amazing process is expressed in this poem:

Death to the Caterpillar

Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat

falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone;

but if it dies, it produces much grain.

John 12:24

 

What is death to the caterpillar we call a butterfly.

— Anonymous

 

From the dark of earth new life stems from seeds once sown.

Despite the pain of loss and our questioning why,

From the source of life this eternal truth is shown:

“Death to the caterpillar we call a butterfly.”

Creation travails until the sons of God appear;

No longer conformed, we have at last been set free,

As every Kingdom mystery is now made clear,

Totally transformed into glorious liberty.

Triumphant in the race we desired to win:

From victory to victory and glory to glory,

We see that power to change comes from within,

As we write another chapter of our life’s story.

The final stage of glory unfolds this result:

Transformed from egg to larva to pupa to adult.

 

The accompanying video shows a butterfly emerging from a chrysalis.

The Verse of the Day reminds us that as we renew our minds, we prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Listen to the Romans 12-1-2 Song “A Living Sacrifice” (Christian Scripture Praise Worship Song with Lyrics).

Romans 12:2: Renewing the mind, a daily process

October 14, 2013

Banded Orange Butterfly

The Verse of the Day for October 14, 2013 is one of my favorite scriptures.

Romans_12-2

Romans 12:2 brings to mind the process of metamorphosis that butterflies and other organisms undergo, reminding us of a similar spiritual process called “renewing the mind.” Christians are instructed not to be conformed but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds (Romans 12:1). The New Testament phrase is translated from the Greek word metamorphoo, from which the English word metamorphosis is derived. The phrase is also used to express that as believers strive to manifest more of Christ in their lives, they are also “changed” into the same image

Butterflies as they undergo metamorphosis are transformed from egg to larva or caterpillar to chrysalis (cocoon) to butterfly (adult). Christian believers also continually undergo a similar spiritual transformation as they mature in Christ. The essence of this amazing process is expressed in this poem:

Death to the Caterpillar

Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat

falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone;

but if it dies, it produces much grain.

John 12:24

 

What is death to the caterpillar we call a butterfly —             

Anonymous

From the dark of earth new life stems from seeds once sown.

Despite the pain of loss and our questioning why,

From the source of life this eternal truth is shown:

“Death to the caterpillar we call a butterfly.”

Creation travails until the sons of God appear;

No longer conformed, we have at last been set free,

As every Kingdom mystery is now made clear,

Totally transformed into glorious liberty.

Triumphant in the race we desired to win:

From victory to victory and glory to glory,

We see that power to change comes from within,

As we write another chapter of our life’s story.

The final stage of glory unfolds this result:

Transformed from egg to larva to pupa to adult.

The following video offers a graphic visual illustration of this amazing process:

Here is a scripture memory song of Romans 12:2 offered in a style reminiscent of the Beatles:

The Verse of the Day we can apply every day, as we are being transformed as we renew our minds, proving what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

“Words of Wisdom”—a daily dose of “words to the wise”–Day 10

May 24, 2013
This blog entry is the first in a series featuring "a daily dose of “words to the wise,” poetically expressed from the Book of Proverbs.

This blog entry is a variation in a series featuring a daily dose of “words to the wise,” poetically expressed from the Book of Proverbs, in that its inspiration is another source.

This morning I did not begin my day by reflecting on wisdom as revealed in the Book of Proverbs, but I was inspired to compose a poem based on remarks that I heard at the graduation ceremony for the Columbus, Ohio campus of National College where I serve as an adjunct professor. The former director, Joe DeLuca, who originally hired me, offered some remarks in presenting awards to students whose lives he had impacted as the first director of the College. He spoke of “Three C’s of Life.” Although I did not produce a poetic work directly based on wisdom from the Book of Proverbs, the following poem does fall into the category of “Words of Wisdom”—a daily dose of “words to the wise.” So what initially seemed like a digression from the series is not after all.  Here is the entry for Day 10:

Choices, Chances, and the Changes We Make

for Joe DeLuca, whose remarks inspired this poem

 

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed        

by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is        \

that good and acceptable and perfect will of God

Romans 12:2

 

As we journey life’s highway, we all must make a choice:

To follow the path that leads to life or the way of death.

The Lord says choose life, but we must give heed to His voice

And follow the path of life each day that we draw breath.

 

Each day we can remain where we are or take a chance

And open up to release what we have and to give,

As we determine whether we diminish or enhance.

Only when we give in love do we begin to live.

 

God’s Word encourages us to be transformed, to change.

As butterflies emerge in beauty, our lives unfold.

From death to life, beauty for ashes God will exchange.

For those who walk uprightly, nothing good will He withhold.

 

Life is the sum of choices and chances, risks that we take,

Not to be conformed but transformed by the changes we make.

Zebra Longwing Butterfly

The ultimate expression of change is the metamorphosis that takes place with butterflies, as alluded to in the poem. Earlier this spring the annual Blooms and Butterflies exhibit opened at the Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus, and as Columbus Christian Spirituality Examiner, I posted an article which discussed metamorphosis and shared its spiritual application and showed a time-lapse video of the process. Here is the link to the article:

http://www.examiner.com/article/blooms-and-butterflies-exhibit-opens-a-spiritual-application

Today’s entry is a slight variation on the Words of Wisdom series but  “good medicine,” nonetheless.