November 2, 2018
The starting phase of living as new creations is ‘filled with struggle’ indeed. At one side, our inner man has been redeemed, giving it the inclination to serve God. However, our mind is still unrenewed. It still has the old nature and the pattern from this world. That’s why our mind still carry the tendency to love this world, self, and money.
And thus, the struggle takes place in our mind. Our spirit always desires to make glad the heart of God. Meanwhile, our unrenewed mind demands us to pursue our own desires and pleasures! And the stupid thing is, the side that often loses is our spirit!
Unknowingly, this world’s influence keeps having access into our lives. It makes us always follow the desires of our unrenewed mind. That’s the point where our old self could have the power to ‘resurrect’ and ‘manifest’ in our everyday life.
That’s why Paul urged us as new creations to promptly undergo the process of the renewing of mind (Rm 12:2). Meaning, we transform the nature and habits of our mind (Eph 4:23). Because as long as this unrenewed mind lingers, this world and evil spirits will always have the entrance to influence us. As long as our mind is unrenewed, our old self – which is supposedly dead together with Christ – could rise and manifest again.
Setting our mind according to the word must be done continuously. The end goal is to have the mind of Christ!
We must persevere in the word until the mind of Christ is established tangibly. It must become a life which naturally manifests all the time in our daily life. That’s the time when the struggle between our new self and old self could cease (2 Cor 5:4).
When we persevere in meditating the word, we are transforming the spirit (nature) of our mind. The mind of Christ starts to be built strongly in our life. And its fruits will start to show. From then on, we could evaluate how far our mind and its habits have been molded to think like Christ (1 Cor 2:16, Simple Indonesian Translation):
1. We become full of love (1 Cor 13:4-8, Indonesian Simply Translation)
The way we interact with others will dramatically change. The way we assess others, and our attitude and responses towards others will manifest Christ Himself.
2. We become increasingly sincere:
(a) our heart attitude is sincere (not harboring grudge against anyone – Mat 5:20-26),
(b) we are sincere in our mind and morality (we appreciate and respect the opposite sex – Mat 5:27-30),
(c) we are sincere in building our family (not based on ‘temporary love’ which easily leads to ‘change of heart’ – Mat 5:31-32 ; 19:8-9),
(d) we are sincere in our words (Mat 5:33-37),
(e) we are sincere in expressing our generosity (Mat 5:38-48, MSG)
3. We become increasingly ‘selfless’
We no longer pursue our personal interest or vain praises. In turn, we prioritize the interest of others and the corporate interest of the Body of Christ (Phil 2:1-4).
4. We become increasingly wise and full of understanding.
The more we have the mind of Christ, the more we’ll become ‘balanced’ and objective in assessing everything. This becomes crucial when we have to make decisions which will influence the lives of many.
We are still idealistic, but now we are also realistic. We don’t become hasty or ambitious in realizing something (even if we do it for God).
In dealing with ‘others’, now we realize that only the sovereignty of God’s hand could change them! Although we have sown and watered the seeds, we realize that only God could give them growth.
So, the more someone grows mature and wise, the more they live in full dependence on God. Wisdom & understanding makes people ‘have’ without becoming ‘attached to what they have’. They could like and even love what they have, but without the fear of losing what they have.
Those who have the mind of Christ live in complete peace. Their heart is calm and still, making it easy for them to listen to the voice of their conscience. They are the ones who are becoming one with Christ more and more, being filled by His divinity. #iLoveGod
Ps. Steven Agustinus