Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Stewardship, part 5

One of the areas of stewardship that does not get much attention is the stewardship of our minds, our thinking. Jesus said in the Great Commandment to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.” Jesus’ use of these words demonstrates the totality of the commitment Jesus is calling us to—that we are to love God with everything ounce of our total being. And, that includes our mind.

The mind can be defined as the element of our soul with the capacity to think, to reason, to contemplate, to meditate, and to decide with that process being conditioned upon the direction and disposition and affections of one’s heart.

To love the Lord our God with our minds means at least the following three things:
  1. To have a worldview that is shaped by scripture
  2.  To guard against wrong ways of thinking
  3. To think about God deeply, particularly as he is revealed in the gospel

Many times, we hear teaching or hold on to traditions without thinking through the implications of those things or the source of those teachings or traditions. We just kind of go with the flow without evaluating what we hear or believe through the lens of scripture. To do so, I believe, is not being a faithful steward of the mind that God gave us to think with for His glory. Certainly, our minds were affected by sin’s entrance into the world, but we have been given a new heart with new desires and a new direction. As the Holy Spirit transforms and renews (Romans 12:1-2) our minds through His Word, we can cultivate biblically informed and Christian thinking in a world that is full of deceitful philosophies (2 Corinthians 10:4-5 and Colossians 2:8).

Here are five ways that we can cultivate a “mind for God” for faithful stewardship:
1.            Know, love, read, hear, memorize, examine, analyze, study, meditate on God’s Word
         Be willing to be stretched and challenged in our thinking and our theology
3.            Be willing to interact with those who think differently than we do
4.            Read books that challenge our mind and deepen our understanding
5.            Prayer – resting in God’s grace/relying on the Holy Spirit (cf. John 16:13)

In a culture that is full of vain philosophies and false teaching, we need a thinking faith with spiritual discernment—the vitality and growth of our spiritual life is at stake.

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