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Jump-Start Your Day

Saturday, December 30th '17

All rights reserved © message by Kris Jackson

 

NEW YEAR, NEW YOU!

"And be renewed in the spirit of your mind" (Ephesians 4:23)

 

Paul said nothing about a new body, a new car, a new house or a new spouse, but one thing we can all begin 2018 with is a new mind. God gives the New Year, you make the new you. Be "renewed". How does the process work? First, re-creation comes before renewal. "If any man be in Christ, he is a new creation" (2 Corinthians 5:17). The Evangelical term is being "born again". You invite Jesus into your heart. He washes the conscience, drives out the old and gives birth to a whole new nature. Paul wrote that "the new man is created after God in righteousness and true holiness" (Ephesians 4:24). The "new man", or the new you, is "created". Your new nature is a special work of the Creator. But the first part of that verse says you have to "put on the new man..." Though given a new nature some born-again people tend to gravitate back to the former so every day you have to make a conscious effort to dress up in Christ, to "put on" like a suit of clothes the new you.

 

That is called renewal. Though "our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day" (2 Corinthians 4:16). It is the "spirit" of our minds that needs renewed. The old nature had thinking patterns seared into the brain since childhood. It takes mega-doses of the word of God to transform the way we see ourselves. The world tries to squeeze us into its mold but Paul commanded, "Be not conformed to this world: but be transformed by the renewing of your mind..." (Romans 12:2) So what is a renewed mind? It is the appropriating of "the mind of Christ". "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 2:5). It is a scriptural mind, replacing the frivolity, selfishness and lust of the old nature with God's thoughts, a positive attitude and a biblical self-image. The renewed mind swaps Hollywood for the Holy Word.

 

The new you is not a clone of other Christians. The new you is still the old you, if that makes any sense, only remolded, retooled, a holy hybrid. And the new you doesn't have to go to the opposite extreme, from worldly to weird. Some fear that if they give their heart to Jesus they will have to be some kind of monk and if they really give their heart to Jesus they will have to be some kind of monkey! Drop that stuff. Believers aren't perfect, just forgiven. But we intend to make headway every day into the likeness of Christ. That is renewal. To adopt that image we have to know His heart. That comes through the intimacy of prayer. And we have to know His personality which comes by leaning on Him in our daily walk. Also, we have to know His ways which we find by daily feeding upon His Word. It's not presto-chango, make a resolution New Year's Eve and tomorrow you're this bubbly ball of victory. Renewal is the ongoing adapting of the born-again heart as it seeks to "be conformed to the image of his Son..." (Romans 8:29) Do you know some actor or sports star that would make a better example to pattern after? Can't think of one, can you? So stick with Jesus. He is giving us the New Year; He'll help make the new you.


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