I had a conversation with one of my best friends today, then read 2 back to back posts on FB a little bit ago that reminded me of that…and I wanted to share this…it feels like it’s for someone in particular, I just don’t know who.
If we could ever get our minds right, if we could EVER get our heads truly into this business of the Kingdom, and TRULY living for Jesus…THERE IS NOTHING in this universe that could stand successfully against us.
Paul said, in Romans 7:25, “…So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God;…”
THAT’S HOW POWERFUL OUR MINDS ARE!
It’s all about what I call FOCUS DISCIPLINE.
This is why the evil one spends the majority of his time left, in massive attempts at distraction(s)… whether they be personal, marital, family, work environment, neighbors, church family, ministry, etc. You name the venue, the devil will work up a distraction to plop right down in the middle of it!
Back to FOCUS DISCIPLINE…
Apostle Peter commands us in 1 Peter 1:13-16, to “…gird up the loins of your minds…as obedient children…hoping to the end for the Grace that is to be revealed at the appearing of Jesus Christ… “
Paul’s instruction to us is so powerful. In 2 Corinthians 10:4-6 he teaches us the keys to bringing down strongholds (those are in our minds, by the way), is by…
1) casting down imaginations (ALSO, in our minds),
2) and high things (In the original language: lofty thoughts or idealogies) that exalt themselves against our knowledge of God. (IN…OUR…MINDS)
3) and bringing into captivity, EVERY thought to the obedience of Christ…(ONCE AGAIN…IN OUR MINDS!)
We’ve GOT to keep our minds, by the Word of God, clear and focused on God and His Purpose for us!
I love to preach/teach, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus… “. But you CANNOT do that without FOCUS DISCIPLINE! Let me re-instate my mantra of the last 15 years or so…NONE OF THIS STUFF WORKS IF YOU DON’T PRAY ON A REGULAR BASIS! Because while the focus I’m talking about happens in the mind; it is NOT a mental discipline! It’s a spiritual discipline!
The devil couldn’t whip Jesus and bend him around to his evil will and purposes because Jesus had FOCUS for His own Plan and Purpose. Let me tie these last few scriptures up for you real quick and I’ll let you go…but THIS IS SO VITAL!
Jesus, praying in the Garden, outlined to the Father what He had accomplished of His Purpose in His time on Earth…
John 17:4-6 I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.
5 And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
6 I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.
- I have glorified You…
- I have finished the work You gave me to do…
- I have manifested Your name…
Well, I guess 2 out of 3 isn’t too bad! Did He lie or misspeak to the Father? Did He just make a mistake? You say “What on earth are you talking about?!“. Well, He told the Father in prayer, “I have finished the work You gave me to do.” But, He hadn’t been to the Cross yet…so HE HAD NOT YET FINISHED THE WORK!
So what was He talking about?
There are places IN PRAYER that we can enter into, that actually lift us above the temporal conflicts, and problems in our lives to see clearly into that holy eternal place, His plan for us, or even beyond us. And in that Faith-focused view, rejoice in His Purpose; calling those things that are not as though they already are, and KNOWING that it is so.
I’m convinced that in His prayer, Jesus was launched into that holy, eternal place where His Word is settled forever, and saw everything beyond the Cross right down to the victorious end of the age. Forget the beating, the nails, a crown of thorns, a spear in the side…forget all the anguish, and betrayal, and contradictions of sinners!
Paul in teaching about the conflicts of mind that assail us in living for God, actually proves my point for us.
The apostle tells us in Hebrews 12:1-3, “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.”
These 3 verses are all integrally entwined with the same thought…
1) WHAT TO DO?…Let us lay aside every weight and sin, and run with patience the race set before us…
2) THE FOCUS (or the HOW) Who for the joy that was set before Him ENDURED…
3) THE ADMONITION…Consider Him, and His example here lest you be wearied and faint in your minds.
Once again, it’s time to get our minds right!
Romans 7:25, “…So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God;…”
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