Last weekend I had the privilege of making a three-hour drive by myself without the children. I got a lot of thinking and praying done (if you’ve commented on this blog, you were probably prayed for!). The trouble is, when I got home, I couldn’t remember any of my epiphanies!
So was that time of meditation worthless? Hardly. I think it’s all a part of this concept of renewing our minds. Our Sunday school teacher on Sunday talked about something that I’ve been thinking about.
If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Whenever I take the time to think about things that are above, I am obeying this command. Obedience is never a waste of time!
Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming. In these you too once walked, when you were living in them.
But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all.
Here is the renewing the mind in knowledge that is a crucial step in putting off the bad stuff, and putting on the good stuff. Knowledge isn’t the only part, but it is a part! In other words, good intentions, or a desire to do right isn’t enough. I have to be willing to take the time to renew my mind. Then I can put on the things I need, and boy do I need these things:
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
This last part has been helpful for me, and the part that I’ve been trying to put into practice this week. This week I’ve been working on some memory verses. Our Sunday school teacher pointed out, letting the word of Christ dwell in us is in the context of the rest of the chapter. In other words, right relationships among husbands and wives, parents and children, and employers and employees flow from the Word of God dwelling in us.