Something to think About
As we begin 2024, I mentioned that we are going to look at testimonies about Jesus: who was he? How did he approach and impact others? What credentials did he have to proclaim himself as the Son of God? Saul of Tarsus wrote not just about how Jesus changed his life, but how that transformation took place.
In the old Star Trek episodes, there was a very unique thing Spock could do called the Vulcan mind meld. He would grip a person’s head between his fingers and then he could actually get into their mind and read their thoughts for a moment. It was certainly a useful tool on the Starship Enterprise, and it gave them vital information from time to time. The Bible speaks of something along those lines, although it has nothing to do with Star Trek:
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus…” (Philippians 2:5 KJV). “…but we have the mind of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 2:16) The Bible actually gives a new twist to the common saying, “mind over matter.” Paul tells us that our minds matter… and he actually advises that we should allow Christ’s very mind to be in us, that we should adopt the same attitudes, thoughts and responses to things that Jesus had.
It is a possibility explored in Charles Sheldon’s well-known book “In His Steps”, where people from various walks of life decided to try to live their lives, make practical decisions, and conduct business as Jesus would. They decided to walk “in his steps” by making his teaching the guiding principle for everything they did. (Wow, that sounds a lot like “being a Christian”!) This was the seminal story and could have been the verse behind the Christian WWJD bracelet fad of a few years ago that advocated asking, “What Would Jesus Do?” before making decisions or taking action.
Stop and think for a moment how you’d be different if you ACTUALLY had the mind of Christ… (There’s probably a bad Frankenstein reference available here about Igor bringing me the wrong brain, but never mind…) If I could do a “Vulcan Mind Meld” with Jesus, I could see His thoughts and understand exactly how He thinks.
Think About It…
But what would Christ think about? Would he play video games? Waste time? Worry about his golf game? Look at Pinterest or Houzz? Think about shopping? Be concerned about who’s in the CFB Playoffs? If I had Jesus’ thoughts and attitudes, how would I be different?
Hmm… wow, that’s a list I’d really rather not have to make. If I had the mind of Christ, I’d be loving, all the time. I’d be connected to my Father, who is good and holy. I would be passionate about the things of God. I’d be compassionate about others. I would have the wisdom of the ages, and the very character of God to guide me!
I’d be humble. I would never act based on what the broken world thinks I should do. I wouldn’t find my worth in the approval of others. I’d confer value on other people no matter what their social status or political leanings. I would be understanding and non-judgmental.
Perhaps I could embody the thought process and decision-making process that Jesus had. I could stop beating myself up and embrace his teaching that I am a child of God, and that all things are possible with faith. Walter Wintle’s old poem, “Thinking”, Thinking (poem) – Wikipedia reminds us that how we think actually influences where we go, and whether or not we succeed:
If you think you are beaten, you are;
If you think you dare not, you don’t.
If you’d like to win, but you think you can’t,
It is almost a cinch you won’t.
James Allen said, “As a man thinketh, so is he.” But, I’m talking about more than the power of positive thinking here; I’m looking at Paul’s challenge to mind-meld with Jesus. How would I think with the mind of Christ controlling and guiding me? If only I could have the mind of Christ, I would act and think differently than if I operated by the more pedestrian and carnal brain of Bo. But perhaps there are some things we can do: Reflect on the things Jesus taught and did; spend more time talking with him; enjoy being with the Word by being IN the Word….
Think about your favorite Jesus moment, and put that moment into your mind; keep it there… Perhaps you’ll have an opportunity to put that into practice today. Perhaps you could have a WWJD moment and walk “In His Steps”.
Would You Mind?
Don’t let the wrong brain do all your thinking for you. Paul assures us in Corinthians that we already HAVE the mind of Christ; his challenge in Philippians is to “Let this mind be in you”…Do you want the thoughts, attitudes, and responses of Jesus in your life? The Scripture says it’s not a matter of you HAVING them in place, it’s a matter of you LETTING them take precedence. What are you going to do about that? Maybe it’s time to make up your mind…
“As a man thinketh, so is he” is something that’s been said
To indicate how much we’re shaped by what is in our head.
Paul agreed that what we think will dictate what we do,
And so he said, about our head: “Let this mind be in you.”
Not the brain of Bo for words, or Dillinger making a heist,
Not even Einstein’s brain, but this: we have the mind of Christ.
Would His mind change how you think, or change your point of view?
Would you make different choices, and would you see things anew?
If you had the mind of Christ, do you think you’d run with a different crew?
Well, you have the mind of Christ. So tell me, friend, what should you do?
To buy my latest book, Real People, Real Christmas: Thirty-one Days Discovering the Hidden Treasures of the Christmas Story, go here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1729034918/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
For Slaying Giants: Thirty Days with David, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Slaying-Giants-Thirty-Devotions-Ordinary/dp/172568327X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1535814431&sr=8-1&keywords=Slaying+Giants%3A+Thirty+Days+With+David
To buy my book, Beggar’s Bread, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Beggars-Bread-Devotions-Ordinary-Guy/dp/1535457392/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1473336800&sr=8-1&keywords=Beggar%27s+Bread