January 19, 2009

Monday Morning Message - Thoughts Count

"The ultimate freedom we have as human beings is the power to select what we will allow our require our minds to dwell upon. We are not totally free in this respect. But we do have great freedom here." - Dallas Willard, Renovation of the Heart

The first, and according to Jesus, the greatest commandment is to "love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind." (Matthew 22:37) This may be the most disobeyed commandment in all Christendom, particularly that last bit about loving God with all our mind.

I fear we have entered an era of lazy Christianity which is content to let others do their thinking for them. A believer who does not think about their faith is in danger of believing just about anything. Some prime examples of this kind of lazy thinking are:
  1. "God wants everyone to be healthy and wealthy." - How do you reconcile this with the fact that Jesus had no place to lay his head?
  2. "God hates fags." - How about the liars, the arrogant, the immoral, the gossips, and the hypocrites, just to name a few?
  3. "It doesn't matter what I believe, just as long as I believe something sincerely." - Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth and the life and no one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6).
Dr. Fisher Humphries states in his book Thinking About God, "The single most important thing about an individual is what they think about God." I must agree wholeheartedly as one's thinking about God shapes everything they do. If we insist on being lazy in our thinking about God we will likely insist on being lazy in our living for God.

The thoughts count. Many will say I've thought about God and there's just not much there. May I invite you to take a second look? Mark Batterson relates an experience one of his church members had in thanking God for the miracles he was receiving at that moment. With a degree in biology this member's list began to run long with things like the unique properties of the amino acids which form the basic building blocks of life. He says, "By the time I was thanking God for the fact that all organisms that form amino acids have the same chirality so that my body can reuse the mutrients and cellular building blocks of the food I break down, I found myself in absolute awe of His creation."

J.B. Phillips wrote a now classic work entitled, Your God Is Too Small in which he states, "We can never have too big a conception of God." It is time to put our minds to work, as those sainted ones before us have done, and consider again the greatness of God and the marvel of His grace toward us. It will result in a life of continuing praise and purpose.

1 comment:

sojourner said...

Cognitive psychologist would call this building God schemas and neuro-psychologists would see the God area of the brain shine brighter. Thank you for the major bullet points in this post.