STRENGTHENING YOUR CORE ◽ YOU
The man knows his own mind because his mind is one with himself.
The Spirit of God knows the things of God because he is one with God.– Matthew Henry
We attended a crafts fair recently and there was an oracle booth near the exit, where consumers could sit down and have their “cards” read to them about their future and their lives. Those types of readings are attractive to people, because inside all of us is a spiritual being crying out for meaning and purpose for our existence. In great loss, we grasp to find the meaning and purpose of that dark season. Every human has a spiritual seeker inside their hearts/minds. It’s how we were created, a human, with a spiritual nature that seeks fulfillment in our hearts and souls.
I’ve thought before, long and hard, about the verse in the bible in I Corinthians 2 where it says we have the mind of Christ. And yet, days and weeks go by when I feel as though my mind is anything but His mind – because it’s riddled with worries, fears, questions and even doubts about who God is and why he exists, and the how’s and why’s of who he listens to and how he answers our prayers. Haven’t you pondered these things, as well?
Lately, I’ve been telling myself, when I’m having a bad day in the mind department, that I have the mind of Christ. But then I stop and ask the question, “Just what is the mind of Christ?” And if I have it, then why am I thinking things that are so contrary to what the son of God would think about his Father?
I decided to look at the entire chapter from which this verse came, which is a good thing to do, instead of pulling out one verse and trying to bank your existence on a few words without a framework. That kind of life is floppy and unsure.
In this chapter, Paul (the writer) reveals that he was afraid and “trembling” and not a great speaker, at all. He also mentions that he resolves to know nothing except Jesus and him crucified. He says there is no way to know the mind of God except through his Spirit. In fact, there is a wisdom that comes from God that we cannot know, unless his Spirit dwells within us. And his Spirit always points us back to the Father and his words, his character, and his truth.
If those who crucified Jesus had only known the character and words of God and believed them, they would not have crucified him. It was because of their lack of understanding that they crucified the One who could save them from sin and death.
That’s where I stopped and paused…
Discernment through the eyes of the Spirit, the presence of God that dwells inside of me, is what enables me to have the mind of Christ.In other words, the days where I’m doubting and fearful and questioning and despondent are the days when I’ve looked away from the character of my Father and allowed my mind to wander over into human judgment and parentheses. I begin to hem in circumstances in life into little boxes of my own understanding and then shake them in defiance and ask why these boxes aren’t full of grace and mercy and peace.
I shake them in his face…
No one but I know the thoughts I think when I’m alone, the thoughts that reside in the deep recesses of my mind. And when those thoughts take up residence, I begin to look at God’s ways and call them foolish, forfeiting peace so that I can understand and make sense. But who am I to instruct the Lord? It didn’t fare well for Job, and it’s not going to fare well for me, until I consider the works of his hands and the gift that came from those same hands…
Jesus. And him crucified.
It’s when I’m still in the quiet of the morning and I consider the Father that gave his Son and freely gives his Spirit to reside in me that the mind of Christ begins to emerge once again.
“What no eye has seen,
what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived”—
the things God has prepared for those who love him—
these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.
I want to see those things with my mind’s eyes, don’t you? Especially, as a new year begins and an old one fades from view. I want to relish and adore this Jesus on a minute by minute basis, so that I’m listening and hearing those things revealed to me by his Spirit that resides in me, that always point me back to Jesus and the gift he gave to me, so that I can live, fully sane and fully unafraid, in a fully sound mind – the mind of Christ.