Romans 12:2, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is –his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
It has been said that an average person can think a thought every second. This means we can have as many as 3,600 thoughts an hour (57,600 thoughts in one 16-hour, wakeful day). Consider if just 10% (one out of ten) of those thoughts, in a normal day, were negative. This would mean you had 5,760 negative thoughts per day. Now consider if you had a “bad day,” and 25% (one out of four) of your thoughts were negative. This would be over 14,000 depressing thoughts!
Paul, in the above passage, is giving the secret to success in the Christian life — the renewal of the mind. Whenever your physical brain has negative thoughts and patterns of thinking that do not conform to the pattern and way of God’s thinking, “Take the thought captive.” Be obedient to the mind of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). Joyce Meyer wrote, “Pay attention to the condition of your mind and keep it free, peaceful and full of faith.”
As a Christian, you are not to conform yourself any longer to the thought patterns of this world. For example, when you’re having a bad day, don’t do what the people of this world do and keep thinking depressing and negative thoughts. Be “transformed” (changed), in your lifestyle, by encouraging yourself with the Word of God (1 Samuel 30:6). Say to yourself, “Today is not going well, but because I’m more than a conqueror, through Jesus Christ, I’m going to make it through this to victory!” When times are tough, don’t listen to yourself; talk to yourself. Avoid letting your thoughts run on “auto pilot,” and be proactive to speak God’s Word over your life.
Make a decision, today, to get rid of all your “stinkin’ thinkin’” and be renewed (made new). Transform your old way of doing things into the new ways of God.
Remember, just because a thought enters your mind, doesn’t mean you have to think about it over and over again like a sad song on repeat. You can stop it and put a new happy song (thought) on.
How do you renew your mind? By rejecting the old fleshly thoughts and replacing them with the new Holy Spirit-inspired thoughts. Reject + replace + repeat = renew. When you are renewed in your mind, you can follow the rest of Paul’s commands, in Romans 12:2, by testing (putting into action) God’s perfect, good and pleasing will for your life. Find what pleases God and think about those things 57,600 times a day!
- On average, what percentage of your thoughts do you think are negative?
- What do you normally do when negative thoughts come into your mind?
- From this point forward, whenever a negative thought comes into your mind, reject it and replace it with a God-pleasing thought and think on that (Philippians 4:8)!