It’s the end of a very long day. The hours worth of things that still need to be done are making me want to give up. My brain bounces between cooking dinner, refereeing fights between my kids and trying to mentally process anything else that I need to get done before tomorrow. I’m left feeling overwhelmed and ill-equipped for what is in front of me. My heart and mind feel weighed down, making my eyes fill with tears. As my brain struggles to function in the midst of the sensory overload, my son comes up to ask the same question I have already answered more than once. I snap and lose my patience. Although I do not want to react that way, my human nature to lash out from frustration wins out over my ability to have self-control. Satan knows this is where he can find me. It was the perfect time of day to trip me up and drag me into his purposes. It was a great moment to steal my joy and spread the frustration to everyone else I encountered (John 10:10).
In the midst of everything we manage, our minds become the frontlines of a battle between good and evil. Feelings of inadequacy, guilt and frustration start to work against us. Satan knows that if he can distract us with enough lies, it becomes harder and harder for us to hear God’s truths through the fog. He loves nothing more than to draw us into darkness and away from God’s light. Our mental state inevitably affects our words, actions and how we treat others around us. It has a significant impact on our ability to walk in His footsteps in our daily lives.
The people of Biblical times were no different. Paul describes the Gentiles as living “hopelessly confused” with their minds in darkness, closed off from God. (Ephesians 4:17-18). Lies are the devil’s specialty, convincing us that what we have learned about our God and His promises are not valid. He loves to steal our peace and hope found in Jesus Christ. When we feel overwhelmed, lost, and afraid, Satan feels empowered to use that for his purposes. But those of us in Christ know that God has something better for us. Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT) says, “Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy”. As we make room for the Holy Spirit, we can transform our thoughts and keep them in line with what God has for us.
As part of our relationship with our Creator, scripture tells us we are to lift any of our worries or concerns to Him. Even if we have already prayed about it or think it is not important enough to bother God with—anything that is a burden on your mind is something, your heavenly Father wants you to release into his hands. By doing this, He can “guard your heart” and “guard your mind” (Philippians 4:6-7).
Allowing God to transform our minds is an integral part of offering our bodies as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1-2). Jesus even makes it clear in the book of Matthew that we should always “love the Lord” with all our heart, soul and mind (Matthew 22:37). To serve and love like Christ, we have to give God space to renew and strengthen our minds. It is how we learn to discern God’s will and plan for our Spiritual walk.
Scripture encourages that anyone who lives in the Spirit will “set their mind on things of the Spirit” (Romans 8:56). Our heavenly Father calls us to keep our mind on “things that are above” (Colossians 3:2), meaning we live through the filter of the gospel, knowing we have hope and freedom in Christ. Being in scripture daily gives us reminders of God’s faithfulness and opens the door for God to work in us.
We all crave less stress and more peace in our lives. By keeping our heart and mind on God’s promise, we can live with incredible peace as we learn to trust His faithfulness (Isaiah 26:3). As we pursue a consistent relationship with Him, we can live with an unexplainable peace regardless of our circumstances (Philippians 4:13).