Do you ever feel like you want to change, but you just can’t seem to make it happen? Often the reason we can’t change is because we’re trying to change in our own strength–and we’re not strong in that area of our lives.
Romans 12:2 tells us what to do if we want to change: renew our minds. There’s just one little problem. It’s hard to make ourselves do that! That’s because we believe lies.
Here are 10 lies that keep us from renewing our minds and 10 truths that will make us actually want to renew our minds.
If you’re trying to develop this habit, read this list each day before you sit down to renew your mind. You could also list any lies you believe, and then write the truth for each lie in your journal. Use this blog post as a reference if you need ideas for lies or truth.
10 Lies That Keep Us from Renewing our Minds
- I’m already doing that. Often we think that as long as we go to church, pray, and read our Bibles, we’re already renewing our minds. This isn’t true. It’s only a renewing of the mind experience if we leave with renewed minds. For that to happen, our minds have to be actively engaged and we have to be willing to change the way we think about God, life, others, and ourselves. Click here to learn more about how to renew your mind.
- I don’t know how to renew my mind. Anytime we learn a new skill, we start out in “I don’t know how to do this” land. We learn how to do it through reading about it, trial and error and practice, practice, practice. There’s no easy way to learn a new skill.
- It’s not necessary. This is a funny lie. I’m not sure why we think the renewing of the mind isn’t necessary for transformation when we don’t have a very good track record of being transformed without it. Romans 12:2 tells us we’re transformed by the renewing of the mind. It’s necessary!
- It’s too hard. I can’t do it. I put these two lies together because, at least in my journal, they always seem to show up together. Here’s the truth: we can do it, we just can’t do it easily, smoothly, quickly, or perfectly. We also can’t do it in our own strength. Thankfully, we don’t need to because this is something we do with God, not for God.
- I don’t have time. 99% of the time, the truth is that we do have time; we just don’t want to spend our time renewing our minds.
- It takes too long. The truth is, we determine how long it takes. A renewing of the mind session can last anywhere from 1 minute to 1 hour or longer. Both lengths of time are valuable. The shorter session is helpful for a quick attitude change and a temptation stopper, and the longer session is great for an intimate time of fellowship with God and an opportunity for Him to pour His truth into us and work through some of those really difficult areas in our lives.
- It doesn’t work, so why bother? This is one of the enemy’s most trusty lies, because if he can get us to believe it, he knows we’ll quit trying and give up on that pesky old renewing of the mind habit. The answer to this lie is also found in Romans 12:2: Do not be conformed to the world, but be transformed by the renewing of the mind. It works.
- It should be easier than this. Paul doesn’t go on to say, “All it will take is one renewing-of-the-mind session.” The truth is, it takes a lot of truth to combat Satan’s lies. Especially if we’ve been hearing those same lies over and over for most of our lives. It’s a battle. Battles aren’t easy, and if we expect it to be easy we’ll just get discouraged. God is faithful. He will change us, but He usually doesn’t do it overnight. The more we go to Him for change, the sooner we’ll see signs of that change.
- I’ve already renewed my mind about that subject before. Here’s the sad, sad truth: usually, we have to renew our minds about the same lies over and over again because those same lies keep popping up over and over again. Here’s the great thing though: if we keep applying the truth day after day after day, eventually we’ll stop hearing those lies. The truth will be at the top of our minds, changing our desires and actions.
- I have to do this perfectly, and since I can’t do it perfectly I might as well not even try it. Oh, the lies of perfectionism. Here’s the truth: It’s impossible to do it perfectly. But that’s okay because we have a perfect helper: the Holy Spirit. He’ll help us as we seek to develop this habit.
If you’d like to develop a renewing of the mind habit, consider starting a renewing of the mind project. Click here for more info on how to start one and also for the link to a free online Bible study to help you develop the habit.
A new Taste for Truth Weight Loss Bible Study will be starting up on October 4th. Click here for info.
Correction: If you’ve ever visited Jasper, Alberta, you might have recognized the picture in my last blog post. We went hiking there for the first time last month and LOVED it. The only problem is that I mislabeled it, thinking it was the parking lot of the end of our backpack trip a few weeks earlier in my home state.
I was wondering why we didn’t have backpacks on in the picture and also wondering who had taken the picture since I didn’t remember visiting with anyone in the parking lot at the end of our backpack trip, but that didn’t stop me from assuming that’s where the picture was taken. Did I ever mention the fact that I’m very forgetful and spacey? I can’t even blame it on old age as I’ve always been this way. (Although I think I may be getting worse!) Anyway, apologies to my Canadian friends for claiming your beautiful mountains as Montana mountains!