Guarding your mind against what you allow in or think about is the most important thing you can do for your life. The mind is where all issues of life flows; whether positive of negative it will impact your existence.
You did not create yourself, you submit to your Creator, Maker, who will guide your thoughts into fruitful end. It is only the Holy Spirit and the word of God that can keep your mind under control, thinking of the right stuff and taking the right decisions.
This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart; who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness, Ephesians 4:17-19.
People, who actively reject the knowledge of God, may consider themselves enlightened, and they may even be quite intelligent, but their separation from God makes their thinking unproductive and blind (darkened) to the truth. Their lack of spiritual understanding naturally makes them callous about morality and leads to sinful behaviors such as lewdness and greed.
Life is relational, you come from a family, community and a society which means you will by all means relate with people and fellowship with others.
There are certain things you cannot avoid, living among people, going to church and working with people, driving to work or taking a public transport, is something you do every day. And all these people have different characters and behaviors, which may contribute and influence your way of thinking positively or negatively.
You can overcome the negative influence when you have a relationship with God and spend time in His word every day.
When the mind is messed up, your whole life is messes up. You can be disabled or deformed in any part of your body, but if you have a sound mind, you can achieve anything you decide to do.
Madness is sickness of a mind; therefore, the mad man on the street is not in control of his/her life anymore, but the blind, the cripple, the duff and dump, and many other sickness that affect the body not the mind will be capable of educating themselves and working to better their life.
The initial formation of the mind
How you were brought up, the environment you grew in, what the family believes in, the things you perceive, people you listen to, and associate with, the experiences of life. All these contribute and build your character and who you become. To live a transformed and a blessed life in the future depends on changing your mind and thinking pattern today.
The Bible talks about how the early Christians were persecuted and most of the Apostles were murdered horrifically, but they did not denounce their God even in the face of death, their minds were set on Him.
But the today Christian’s persecution is not as physical as it used to be; rather the attack is against the mind (the battle ground), attacking it spiritually making you become your own prisoner or captive with your own thought.
This does not only affect unbelievers, it affects believers as well. The devil’s targets are Christians, how to fight their minds to think that they are saved but live a defeated, unfruitful lives. They are born again but with a circular mentality. He makes you feel inadequate to experience the promises of God and enjoy His goodness with his lies.
The first time I heard about Jesus, I loved Him because He was so kind. The Sunday school teacher told us how much Jesus loved us and cared for every life.
I always want to be at church to listen to the good news stories from the Bible and I thought that was all about Christianity.
You have to be sanctimoniously religious, trying to earn favor with the Lord by how you live and the things you do. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. Ephesians 2:8-9
I grew up with this mentality and spent years of my life with this believe. I really loved the Lord, but was under captivity of this mindset which was deeply rooted in me. And it looked like all the Christians folks I fellowship with had the same mentality, even though we will talk about the goodness and promises of God for His children and sometimes preaching it, to me it did not reflect in my life, because the mind has not accepted this truth that we are saved by grace through faith.
The Bible says, These people draw near to Me with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men. Matthew 15:8-9
I learnt more about grace after I lost everything that mattered to me. When God met me in my isolation and transformed my thoughts, I began to understand who I was in Christ Jesus and what He did for me two thousand years ago on the cross.
No one was born carrying with you what you will need to survive on earth with; we came from the womb empty, because God had already created everything that man will need to survive on earth, before creating man on the sixth day, making sure we live comfortably.
But when man was tempted by Satan and sinned in the Garden of Eden and was thrown out of it, God sent His only begotten Son Jesus Christ to die for our sins. This is the bases for our salvation, we did not earn it. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast, Ephesians 2:8-9.
Therefore, the love of God for us is independent of our works. We cannot earn grace, it is an unmerited favor of God and faith is our response to what He has already done and given us.