With so many choices, I am always looking for ways to simplify my decisions and actions. In our diverse world, I want to live out my Christian faith as simply as possible. I have dedicated a lot of prayer and thought to how that is possible. This is what I’ve discovered.
1. God thinks differently than we do so I must adjust my way of thinking to his (not the other way around). “For my thoughts are not your thought, neither are your ways my ways”, declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Is 55: 8 – 9 NIV
2. Learn how God thinks by meditation, prayer, and reading His thoughts in the Bible. “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 God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” Rom. 12:2 NLT
3. Love God first, ourselves second, then we will be able love others. The philosophy of this world is to love ourselves first. When we don’t love God first, all our actions will be for selfish gain. Learning to love God is how we learn to love others – by thinking of them first. Not very popular in this world. These are the words of Jesus, “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important. Love your neighbor as yourself. The entire law and the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” Mt. 22: 37 NIV
As with most things, it sounds simple. But transforming our minds is sometimes more difficult than transforming our bodies through dieting. Staying Heaven Bound in a Hollywood World is like saying no to Taco Bell and yes to broccoli. Taco Bell is convenient, has flashing neon attracting our attention, and appeals to our taste buds. Broccoli, on the other hand, has to searched for, carefully prepared, and doesn’t necessarily taste that good. But nutritionists agree broccoli is better for us than Taco Bell.
We must search for God. He doesn’t stand out on the street with a flashing neon sign. But the rewards are worth it. We will live a life of peace through understanding and being in relationship with God. Our circumstances may not always go smoothly, but trusting in the higher ways of God does bring peace. “For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jer 29: 11 – 13 NIV