Friday, January 24, 2014

Mind Control

Ephesians 4:29 (NIV)
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Matthew 9:4 (NLT)
Why do you have such evil thoughts in your hearts?

My Bible has a huge arrow highlighting Ephesians 4:29 with a bold, all caps note “MY GOSSIP SCRIPTURE”.  When I need reminding, a quick flip through the New Testament does it.  I truly, truly try not to gossip.  I’m not perfect, but I just steer clear of those conversations.  Is this good?  Absolutely!  Is this enough?  Not by a long shot, because what goes on in my head is a completely different story and just as evil.  

Jesus raised the bar of the Ten Commandments by saying the person who thought lustfully had already betrayed their spouse.  Jesus chastised the law abiding Pharisees for being shiny clean on the outside but filthy on the inside.  Jesus cares more about our hearts and minds than he does about appearances.  I think Jesus’ example about lust is intended for all the things we shouldn’t do.

I’m in trouble!  You too?  How can we stop the not-so-Christian mental soundtrack?  Don’t be discouraged.  We’re human.  We can’t do it alone.  Only the Holy Spirit can transform our hearts so we look at others differently.  (We can help by changing our soundtrack to play back God’s Word too.)  When we see ourselves as undeserving recipients of God’s love and forgiveness, it’s then possible to see God’s other imperfect children through His eyes – with undeserved, unconditional love.

Transform your heart first and you won’t have to worry about appearances. 

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