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Thursday, January 13, 2011

What Do You Mean It’s Not All About Me?

By Lisa Karon Richardson

One of the things I’ve been called to work on in my Christian walk this year is having the mind of Christ. On the surface it sounds perfectly ridiculous. How can I, finite and fallible as I am, think like God?

I’ve been saved since I was ten. I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theology and I’m a preacher’s wife. I still don’t begin to understand the way He works. Much less think the same. But Philippians instructs believers to: “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:”

For years I’ve struggled thinking I could do this on my own, but recently I’ve learned that I can’t and not only that. I’m not supposed to! It should be primarily God’s work. (Obviously, this doesn’t excuse me from moral obligations or from doing my best to please God.) Philippians 2:13 says: “For it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.”

Paul gave the Philippians the low down even more clearly in 1:6 “He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”

Do you see how liberating that is?

The fate of the free world doesn’t rest on my should… Er… Make that I don’t have to grasp after holiness on my own. I can’t attain it on my own, but God is faithful and loving and He has promised to complete the work that He’s started in me.

God actually wants me to succeed! So He takes on the job of making it happen. I stick to my bit, like… oh… I don’t know planting the seed. And He does the heavy lifting by making the stuff grow.

In this case that starts with desire, for the mind of Christ, and then planting the seed of the word in my heart. I.e. reading my Bible.

So what does having the "Mind of Christ" mean to you? What does God have you working on this year?

12 comments:

  1. yikes, you had to ask.

    I'm supposed to be submitting. That was supposed to be submitting in two ways: treat my writing like a business and get my book submitted and to submit my time to God: more prayer, more study, more reading--more of Him and less of me.

    I'm not doing so well on one of these. Can you guess?
    But you've encouraged me, Lisa. He wants me to succeed.
    Thank you.

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  2. Deb, I really believe that if He's asked you to do it, He'll equip you. Not that it won't require effort on your part. But He's rooting for you, not waiting to zap you with a lightning bolt if you fail!

    Same for me. So why not be bold!

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  3. Lisa, sounds like we've been on similar journeys lately. I still struggle to do things in God's strength and not my own.

    I guess for me the main things is just to always be conscious of God and asking for his assistance and his direction.

    One of the neat applications I've seen of this scripture, by the way, is for people struggling in school. Really meditating on this scripture and having faith that its true can also be very helpful in that realm.

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  4. Great post, Lisa.

    What I'm feeling from the nudges He's giving me is two-fold:

    - remember to write in His name and include Him in my characters' lives; and

    - keep up with the church blog and website because according to the stats, people all over the world are being exposed to Pastor Lorne's messages through it. And although some readers end up there because they're searching for something else, many stay to check the pages and 'dig around'.

    PS - After listening to hubby rave on about it, Pastor Lorne is now reading Emma's Outlaw on the eReader I lent him. Yikes! Yes, I will relish advice on his expert equine knowledge, but I hesitate to guess what he thinks about the romance aspect.

    Anita Mae.

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  5. Being conscious of God is so much easier to say than do! There's so much "noise" in the world that tries to drown out His still small voice.

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  6. Anita Mae, I think you have a wonderful ministry keeping up your church blog. You may never know the effect it has on the world, but I'm confident God is using it for his glory, because that is your sincere desire.

    I bet Pastor Lorne will love your story, romance and all!

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  7. I'm trying to sink myself into the awareness that God is God in me and can work through me in SPITE of me. I get so buried in doubt and fear and condemnation I don't even want to step out to obey in anything. But it's time for that to change.
    Yep, it does sound like many of us are getting similar instructions... it isn't about us at all!

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  8. Hm, if so many of us are getting the same or similar messages, I'm getting very excited about what God has in store for the Inkwell!

    Especially when that message is to let Him be God and not to try to take on His responsibilities!

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  9. Oh, Lisa, I just love this. The mind of Christ. To be so immersed in Him that everything I do shows His love. It would be amazing to look at others through His eyes and be strong enough to treat others the way He would. Right now, I fail miserably in this.

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  10. I fail too, Suzie. Often. But it's so good to know that He's there, and will help me succeed if I will just step back and let him take the reins.

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  11. Thanks Lisa. Wow, the mind of Christ, just the thought is overwhelming.

    I like how you said that it starts with a desire, then action- planting the seed of the Word in your heart.

    For me it's realizing that I can't do it on my own, that I can't strive my way into anything.

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  12. That was the whole revelation for me, Cheryl. I knew I couldn't be holy on my own, but I can't put on the mind of Christ on my own either. And it's His responsibility to complete the work in me. He claimed the responsibility, too it's like How we can plant or sow, but He gives the increase. He does the hard part!

    Like you said I can't strive my way into anything!

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