“Do you not know? Do you not hear?
Has it not been told to you from the beginning?
Have you not understood from the foundations of the world?”
I’m going to dwell on the passage we covered yesterday by highlighting certain ideas:
Romans 8:5-8 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
Derek W.H. Thomas of Ligonier Ministries, in his series “Romans 8” speaks of distinguishing the believer from the non-believer as to that which the mind goes to when one is alone. Does your mind tend towards things of Jesus or towards things of the earth? Now, one can get quite legalistic about all this, but the fact remains that sheep hear His voice and know Him and follow Him. Not perfectly, mind you. Sometimes he needs to leave the 99 to go after the one. Still, that one will know the shepherd when He arrives.
I think the primary problem with me is that I don’t dwell on the things of God in productive way. Yes, I indeed do think of Him often throughout the day, but it’s easy for this to become, dare I say, a mindless routine. I’m simply going through the motions. I have to honestly assess myself from time to time and wonder if I’m really waiting for the Lord to return. Am I anticipating him? Yes, I’m confident he will return, but am I looking down the road, so-to-say, to see him on the horizon?
Yesterday, I prayed for someone to share the gospel with, and God answered that prayer. It was a guy I have already shared Jesus with. Nice guy. I like him. Works hard. But, he has health problems and recently went through a divorce. I asked him how he’s doing with all this stuff we have discussed in the past. He hasn’t done anything, so I encouraged him to re-consider it all. Who knows how it will turn out?
I tell you this simply because I haven’t really prayed specifically lately. I haven’t prayed, honestly, for someone to share the gospel with. Yes, I prayed in general, but I haven’t asked God to send someone to me, or me to him. Then, when I did, God answered.
Do you see where I’m going with this? My mind wanders, sometimes for long periods, and I’m out of the game. It takes intentionality and effort to focus on that which matters. And that which matters is not of this world.
Hear me on this. Our God is capable of walking on water and stopping violent storms with one word. He holds the oceans in the palm of his hands. He whistles and brings a mighty armies against his opponent. Then again, he sets one against the other so that they devour themselves. He creates us out of nothing and gives us life. He put the sun, moon, and stars in the sky for us to know him. He sends his prophets to tell us of what is to come so that we may know that he is God. He calls our name and saves us from ourselves. He provides for all our needs and gives us every good thing. He is generous and kind. He is merciful beyond comprehension and loving beyond measure. He protects and defends us. He is our rock and our fortress.
He is called:
Advocate. Lamb of God. Judge. Lord of Lords. The Resurrection & The Life. Man of Sorrows. Shepherd & Bishop of Souls. Head of the Church. Master. Faithful & True Witness. Rock. The Door. High Priest. Living Water. Bread of Life. Rose of Sharon. Alpha & Omega. True Vine. Messiah. Teacher. Holy One. Mediator. The Beloved. Branch. Carpenter. Good Shepherd. Light of the World. The Word. Image of the Invisible God. Chief Cornerstone. Savior. Servant. Author & Finisher of Our Faith. The Almighty. Everlasting Father. Shiloh. Lion of the Tribe of Judah. I Am. King of Kings. Prince of Peace. Bridegroom. Only Begotten Son. Wonderful Counselor. Immanuel. Son of Man. Dayspring. King of the Jews. Prophet. Redeemer. The Amen. Anchor. Bright Morning Star. The Way, the Truth, & the Life. Jesus Christ.
This is from a picture in my office.
It’s good to have my mind set on the Spirit.
Father, I have been going through the motions. Please forgive me. I desire to be in my right mind with it set of things of the Spirit. Still, you know my nature; I am prone to wander. Keep me under your wing where I belong. Amen.
Copyright © 2019 Scott Powers
Photo Credit: Bri Bjorgan