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24th July: Battle for the Mind

Do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may prove what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2

The pattern of this world has an insidious influence, and we are here told to stand out from it. The secret of being different is clearly stated. It does not lie in our feverish activity of self reform, but it starts with the renewing of our mind. Our thoughts are not God's thoughts, and our whole outlook needs changing. Everything else will follow. Attitudes determine action, and beliefs behaviour. This renewing of the mind is something that God alone can do, but we are instructed not only to allow him to do it but to co-operate with him by the 'direction' of our thinking -- the 'set' of our minds (Rom 8:5-6).

Think over today and meditate on what a renewed mind -- the mind of Christ (1 Cor 2:16) should have been thinking about; whatever is true, honourable, just, pure, lovely, gracious, excellent and worthy of praise (Phil 4:8). Has my thinking today slipped into any of the following categories?

The selfishness that puts my career above God's demands.
The laziness which means that |I did not do my utmost for the patient today.
The mental dirt I allowed to accumulate.
The way I have allowed the world to condition what I think of others.
The materialism implicit in my life-style.
The needless anxiety I have felt about my daily needs
when God has said he will care for them.
My unavailability to those who need me.
The set of my mind on earthly things.
May the mind of Christ my Saviour
Live in me from day to day,
By his love and power controlling
All I do and say.

Katie Barclay Wilkinson

O Lord, my thoughts are so difficult to control, and
it is easy to be discouraged when I realise how
often my thinking reflects the world's viewpoint
instead of yours. Cleanse the thoughts of my heart
and mind today, and help me to bring into captivity
every thought to the obedience of Christ.

Further reading: Col 3:1-3. Eph 4:17-32.


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