Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

Romans 12:2 NLT

This morning, we started a new family devotional together from Jesus Calling, Family Devotional by Sarah Young: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1400209951/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_aj.NFb3Z1WYVV

And it begins with a devotional on the renewal of our minds:

We discussed how this topic is timely and lines up with several things we’ve discussed as a family recently while dealing with several days without power, water, cell service, or Internet. As a family, we found ways to appreciate instead of grumble, and enjoyed opportunities for helping our neighbors and friends and begging helped in return. And we are learning to trust that God has a plan and a purpose (especially in the challenging times) — to reveal that His way is so much better than the normal, negative patterns of reaction, offense, anxiety, etc.

We talked about retraining our minds, and with Mia focused firmly on wanting a puppy for her upcoming birthday and Christmas — her immediate answer to the proposed questions was to “think of puppies”. And we all smiled and laughed.

Our natural has us looking for one good thing to fill us up when another area leaves is empty. It reminds me of the dual fuel generator that we were eventually able to get running for this weekend, and if we run out of propane in the tank, we can fill the generator up with gas.

But the world only offers us types of fuel that will run out and not last — if Mia doesn’t get a puppy come December, “puppies” will no longer be a wonderful thought, but will be painful disappointment. Aren’t there things in this world at times in your life that once would stir up happy and hopeful thoughts, but that circumstances shifted it to disappointment or pain? Have you ever experienced the loss of a beloved family member that made you smile, and later known the pain of deep mourning?

The answer is not to put walls up and become cold and lack passion towards anything so that we are never hurt. We just need those alternate fuels that run out to remind us of the one fuel that never runs out. No matter what goes “badly” in my life, I can always be grateful that Jesus Christ died for our sins and that I do not face an eternity in hell, separated from God’s love. This remembrance of the cross can be the anointing oil that renews my mind, no matter the circumstances.

How?

Renew our minds. Romans 12:2

Think carefully. Hebrews 3:1

Continually seek Him. Psalm 105:4

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And so, dear brothers and sisters who belong to God and are partners with those called to heaven, think carefully about this Jesus whom we declare to be God’s messenger and High Priest.
Hebrews 3:1 NLT

Search for the Lord and for his strength; continually seek him.
Psalms 105:4 NLT