Posts Tagged ‘renewing the mind’

Renewing the mind: Have you lost your mind?

February 8, 2019

Recently while reflecting on the early days of my journey of faith as a Christian believer, I thought of an expression associated with renewing the mind, the ongoing process that every Christian must understand since we apply these principles of renewal every moment of every day. Whether spoken of as “putting off the old and putting on the new” or “putting on the mind of Christ,” the Word of God commands us to be transformed by the renewing of our minds, according to Romans 12:1-2. Literally, we are to transform ourselves, as we prove “what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

In thinking about this vital process, I recall a previous blog post where I examined a Phrase of the Day related to the state mind of someone whose behavior we are attempting to understand:

“Have you lost your mind?”

Individuals sometime may ask this rhetorical question in a state of utter disbelief, as they attempt to understand the seemingly bizarre behavior of the person to whom the question is addressed. To lose your mind” generally means to “to become mentally ill” or “to start behaving in an utterly foolish or strange way.”

In thinking about the expression, I also recall a specific occasion when someone warned me about the possibility of “losing my mind.” After being drafted into the Army during the late 1960s, I experienced salvation through a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. During this time an Army buddy noticed that I was always reading the Bible and talking about God and spiritual matters to the degree that seemed too much for a person with a sound mind. In all seriousness, he pulled me aside and said, “Johnson, if you keeping studying the Bible so much, you’re going to ‘lose your mind.’”

Immediately, I went on the defensive and explained when I was in college, I devoted much more time and exerted much more effort in studying to earn my degree in pharmacy, and I didn’t lose my mind then. “Why should I lose my mind from studying the Bible?” I asked.

After a period of time, however, something strange began to happen. I started to “lose my mind,” but I began replacing it with a new mind. In studying the Scriptures, I discovered the concept of “renewing the mind.”

In nature we note the process of metamorphosis that butterflies and other organisms undergo, reminding us that, similarly, Romans 12:1-2 instructs believers 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, the root of the English word metamorphosis. The phrase also expresses that as believers strive to manifest more of Christ in their lives, they are “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 we express in this poem:

As We Renew our Mind

Do not lie to one another, for you have stripped
off the old self with its evil practices, 10 and have put on the new [spiritual] self who is being continually renewed in true knowledgein the image of Him who created the new self—

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.”

Putting off the old, putting on the new

July 16, 2018

The Verse of the Day for July 16, 2018 reminds believers of who we are in Christ Jesus:
Colossians 2:9-10 in the Revised English Version:

for in him dwells, in a bodily manner, all the fullness of what God is,

and you have been given that fullness by being in union with him, the one who is the head over every ruler and authority.

To understand more fully our identity in Christ, we must take a look at the preceding verses found in Colossians 2:6-10 (REV)

6Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in him, 7having been firmly rooted and now being built up in him and established in your trust, just as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
8See to it that no one takes you captive through empty, deceitful philosophy that is according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ, 9for in him dwells, in a bodily manner, all the fullness of what God is, 10and you have been given that fullness by being in union with him, the one who is the head over every ruler and authority.

This passage reminds believers that as we have received Christ Jesus, the Lord, we are to walk in him. This practice is an aspect of renewing the mind, whereby we put off the old and put on the new.

These lines reflect our prayer to God:

Open our ears to hear the Word that we might do it,
To put on the mind of Christ and learn to renew it.

The following poem refers to this ongoing process:

Putting off the old, putting on the new

9Never lie to one another, since you have put off the old self with its practices

10and have put on the new self that is being renewed to a true knowledge

that is in accord with the image of the one who created it

Colossians 3:9-10 (REV)

 

The Word of God instructs us to renew our mind:
To walk in the love of God is to walk in victory.
As we strive toward even deeper levels of intimacy,
We will walk in power and will not be left behind.
With laser precision we target our old man nature
And consider ourselves dead to sin once for all.
We respond in obedience in answer to God’s call;
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, vile, corrupt, wrapped in sinful pride
And put on the new, as one changes garments, habits.
Above all we put on compassion from the start
And abide in our hiding place, filled with a grateful heart.

The last line of the poem makes a reference to “a grateful heart,” part of the lyrics of a song reminding believers to “Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart.”

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart
Give thanks with a grateful heart
Give thanks unto the Holy One
Give thanks because He’s given Jesus Christ, His Son (repeat)
And now let the weak say, ‘I am strong’
Let the poor say, ‘I am rich
Because of what the Lord has done for us’ (repeat)
Give thanks
Give Thanks

As we put on the Lord Jesus Christ, renewing our minds as we walk in love, our souls overflow with gratitude, expressions of a grateful heart.

We close with Kutless offering “Complete” based on Colossians 2:9-10:

Have you lost your mind?

April 28, 2018

For April 28, 2018 we are going to take a look at the Phrase of the Day, a rhetorical question that is sometimes asked in a state of utter disbelief. When an individual fails to understand the seemingly bizarre behavior of someone else, the question might be asked,

“Have you lost your mind?”

“To lose your mind” generally means to “to become mentally ill” or “to start behaving in an utterly foolish or strange way . . .”

I recall on rare occasions in my childhood my mother would emphatically ask, “Boy, have you lost your mind?” She questioned my state of mind in response to something I said or did that seemed totally irrational or absolutely “off the wall”, indicating that I was not seriously thinking about the consequences of what I was saying or doing.

In thinking about the expression, I also recall a specific occasion when someone warned me about the possibility of “losing my mind.” After being drafted into the Army during the late 1960s, I experienced salvation through a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. During this time an Army buddy noticed that I was always reading the Bible and talking about God and spiritual matters to the degree that seemed too much for a person with a sound mind. In all seriousness, he pulled me aside and said, “Johnson, if you keeping studying the Bible so much, you’re going to ‘lose your mind.’”

Immediately, I went on the defensive and explained when I was in college, I devoted much more time and exerted much more effort in studying to earn my degree in pharmacy, and I didn’t lose my mind then. “Why should I lose my mind from studying the Bible?” I asked.

After a period of time, however, something strange began to happen. I began to “lose my mind,” but I began replacing it with a new mind. In studying the Scriptures, I was introduced to the concept of “renewing the mind,” the ongoing spiritual process that all believers go through every day we draw breath.

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. The essence of this process is expressed in this response:

As we renewed our mind

And be not 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 (NKJV)

We will not to be conformed but transformed as we renew our mind

That we might see for ourselves all that God desires us to be.

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

Striving to know even deeper levels of intimacy.

With laser precision we will target the old man nature,

And we will put to death the deeds of  the flesh once and for all.

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

For as we put on the mind of Christ, we will grow and mature.

Where darkness once filled our minds, the Word of God now inhabits.

Lying and all kinds of corrupt speech we learn to put aside,

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

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

Above all else we put on compassion, cords of love that bind

Our transformed hearts to one another, as we renew our mind.

We end with a scripture memory song based on Romans 12:1-2  “A Living Sacrifice” :

We should, indeed “lose our minds” and be transformed by renewing our minds that we may prove what is that “good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

Renewing the mind: the key

October 14, 2017

Romans 12-2

Today marks the first day of the return of our blog. Dr. J’s Apothecary Shoppe is now open again along with our new website: lonnelledwardjohnson.com. From Romans 12:2 in the King James Version comes the Verse of the Day for October 14, 2017 with a reference to “renewing the mind.”

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.

Here is how the Amplified Bible puts it:

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 renewed 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,” an active, ongoing process.

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:

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 [Amplified Bible]

 

Now we know the key to power is renewing the mind,

As we seek to release this life-force within you and me,

For we long to walk in power 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 presence of God, the Almighty who inhabits

The praises of His people, where we yearn to abide,

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

We 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.

 

 

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

Put on the whole armor and more

January 27, 2016

Ephesians-6 10-11

The Verse of the Day for January 27, 2016 is found in Ephesians 6:12-13, which is part of the most celebrated passage related to putting on the whole armor of God, beginning with verse 10 and continuing through verse 20. King James Version renders the first five verses of passage this way:

Ephesians 6:10-14:

10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness,

In addition to its use in this passage, the expression “to put on” is used in various other places in the New Testament. Note this reference to putting on something other than specifically “the whole armor of God”

Romans 13:12 (NKJV):

12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.

1 Thessalonians 5:8 (AMP) speak of similar elements of the armor mentioned in Ephesians 6:

But since we [believers] belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet, the hope and confident assurance of salvation.

Romans 13:14 (NKJV) mentions something else to be put on:

But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.

References in Ephesians and Colossians in the King James Version mention “putting on the new man” as part of the renewing of the mind: In Ephesians 4:22-25 (KJV) we this find this exhortation:

22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;
23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;
24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another

Colossians 3:10 continues with these words:

And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:

Colossians 3:12-14 elaborate in terms of what believers are to put on:

12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. 14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.

The discussion of the above Scriptures reveal that the phrase “to put on” is directly connected to renewing the mind, whereby Paul encourages followers of God to “put off, put on, and put away.” We are encouraged to change of our minds and to 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. This transformative process is ongoing in the life of every believer and becomes the topic of the following poem:

The Key to the Renewed Mind

Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off

your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds.

10 Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn

to know your Creator and become like him.

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? God please show me,
For I seek to walk in power and excel and not be left behind,
As I strive to know levels of deepest intimacy.
With laser precision I target the old man nature
And put to death and mortify my members once for all.
I respond in obedience in answer to God’s call;
Not conformed, I transform myself, as new man, mature.
In the secret place of the Lord who ever inhabits
The praises of His people, here I 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 I put on compassionate love from the start
And abide in my hiding place, filled with a grateful heart.

We conclude with another Scripture Memory Song: Put on the Full Armour (Ephesians 6:11-12):

Key to the renewed mind

November 24, 2015

Colossians 2--6-7

The Verse of the Day for November 24, 2015 comes from Colossians 2:6-7(NKJV)

As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.

This passage reminds us that as we have received Christ Jesus, the Lord, we are to walk in him, which is an aspect of renewing the mind, the process whereby we “put off the old and put on the new.” These lines reflect our prayer to God:

Open our ears to hear the Word that we might do it,

To put on the mind of Christ and learn to renew it.

In reflecting on this topic of vital importance to every believer, the following poem came to mind:

 

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 (AMP)

 

It has been said that the key to power is the renewed mind

But what is the key to the renewed mind? God help us to see,

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

As we strive to know new levels of deepest intimacy.

With laser precision we must target the old man nature

And put to death those lusts of the flesh that still afflict us all.

Not conformed but transformed as a new creation, we mature,

As we respond in obedience in answer to God’s call.

We put off the old and put on the new, as we change habits

And reckon the old man dead: vile, corrupt, wrapped in sinfl pride.

We strive to dwell in the secret place where the Lord inhabits

The praises of His people; here we desire to abide.

Above all, we put on compassionate love from the start,

Wrapping ourselves in perfect unity, filled with a grateful heart.

The closing phrase of the poem, not only refers to the ending of the Verse of the Day in its reminder of “abounding in thanksgiving,” but the lyrics of a song appropriate of this season also come to mind: “Give Thanks with a grateful heart.” Don Moen offers this expression of gratitude to God in song:

 

 

 

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.