Loving The Lord with our Mind

John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

Summer 2014 195

Jesus came so that we may have an abundant life; living vibrantly should be our focus as Christians. Ladies, we are missing out on blessings if we do not walk wisely in this area. An abundant life is lived when we are thriving right where God has us. If we are purposeful with our daily decisions even our most mundane moments can add up to create a beautifully abundant life. Life is a gift from God and it is up to us how we live under His direction. We all have the choice to live in such a way that is honoring to God. Luke 10:27 tells us that we are to love God with all of our heart, strength, soul and mind. A large determining factor of how we live are the thoughts we think.

Our thoughts shape our life. Proverbs 4:23 tells us to guard our hearts for from it flow the issues of life. Therefore we must be mindful of our thoughts. The Bible instructs us to walk in wisdom and we must do so if we are going to have vibrant lives. Three ways of practicing this are: constantly taking our thoughts captive, stopping the comparison game and expressing gratitude. These habits will enable us to set our perspective on abundance and our life will reflect that.

Taking Our Thoughts Captive

2 Corinthians 10:15 tells us to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ. One of the hardest battles we will fight in purposing to live an abundant life are our thoughts. We are innate sinners and do not naturally have thoughts directed towards goodness. We must train our minds to focus on the good. This does not mean we live with our heads buried in the sand, refusing to acknowledge that this world is a fallen place. However, a person living for Christ understands the need to set their mind on things above. Focusing on worldly measures will only tear us down and ruin any hope of living an abundant life. We are to be the gatekeepers of our minds, allowing only what will benefit us to pass through, turning away everything else. Going to the scriptures we find God tells us what to think about. Philippians 4:8 tells us to focus (think) on eight things.

1). Whatever is true
2). Whatever is noble
3). Whatever is right
4). Whatever is pure
5). Whatever is lovely
6). Whatever is admirable
7). Whatever is excellent
8). Whatever is praiseworthy

Think of your mind as a garden; it is up to you what you grow in this garden. Letting bad thoughts past the gate of your mind is like allowing weeds to creep in. Eventually they will choke out all the beauty you have cultivated. It cannot be stressed enough that the type of thoughts we have create the type of life we live. Guard your thoughts and protect your life. Allow goodness to grow and you will flourish in abundance.

Stopping the Comparison Game

As females we can often get swept up in comparing ourselves to others. This may or may not be intentional but if we are going to live beautiful lives it needs to stop. God would not have gone through with your creation if He did not know the world needed you. When we compare ourselves to others we are in a sense telling God He didn’t do a good enough job creating us. Comparison is a heart issue and not something to be taken lightly. Satan wants to see you fail, he wants you to think that you are not good enough and stop you from living your full potential. The time we spend comparing ourselves to others is time that is wasted, time we can’t get back. If we are desiring to live a vibrant life, you don’t have time for satan and his lies. Stop him in his tracks ladies.

Meditate on verses such as Jeremiah 29:11 – “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you plans to give you a hope and a future” and Zephaniah 3:17 “The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exalt over you with loud singing.” Realize that God doesn’t make mistakes and that what you perceive as your greatest weaknesses may just be your largest assets; we never are sure how God will use us. Let’s be thankful for the beautiful life we live and stop wasting our time comparing ourselves to others.

Expressing Gratitude and Counting our Gifts

You cannot have an abundant life apart from Christ and we know that God is love. Therefore you cannot have an abundant life if you are not doing so in love. What do you love about this life? Focus on cultivating those things and notice how your life changes for the better. Ask anyone living in abundance and they will tell you just how important the practice of gratitude is. This world is not perfect, its not meant to be. We all have hard, messy, imperfect days. However, that does not mean we can’t look for blessings God has given. Might I encourage you to keep a gratitude journal where you record the blessings God has given you? The more you practice looking for these gifts, the more you will find throughout your day. Ann Voskamp – the author of One Thousand Gifts – is quoted as saying “Gratitude for the seemingly insignificant – a seed – this plants the great miracle.” Its a change of perspective when we begin to count blessings, we lose our sense of entitlement and really begin to notice all God has given. What we have becomes enough. Letting go of what we think our life is supposed to look like allows us to celebrate everything that our life truly is.

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So ladies, purpose to love the Lord with your mind. Purpose to live abundantly. Give God your all and watch as He makes it enough. We really can live beautiful lives if only we will be purposeful about doing so.

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