Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.
This week’s devotional is from Matt Varah Wilson, Prayer Coordinator for The Message.
You know, if you want change in your life… change.
Prayer is one of the best places where we get to change. Prayer is the place where we not only get to know him, but actually where we also get to become like him.
I used to pray this prayer, ‘God give me a transformed mind’. It was a sincere prayer, but it was without wisdom. It was also without results.
The reason it didn’t achieve quicker results, is that as I prayed ‘God give me a transformed mind’, it was almost as if I said, ‘here you go, I’ve said my bit. Now I’m waiting on you God to do your bit.’
I was putting the ball in his court instead of taking hold of what is already made available to me.
Romans 12:2 says: ‘Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think’.
I have good news for you. There is a simple, game changing way to pray. It’s so simple you might want to step away from reading this briefly and laugh out loud. (Please do, I’ll wait for you).
Ok, this is the practical application for change.
Let’s use Colossians 3:12-15 as an example.
‘Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.’
In the past, I would pray a generic prayer, ‘Lord, make me more patient, make me more kind, help me to forgive, sorry for being rubbish’.
In my experience, I found this a more effective way of praying this verse:
‘Thank you Father. I am chosen. You chose me! Thank you God I am holy. I do holy things. I live in a holy manner. Thank you that you are holy. Thank you Father I am dearly loved by you. These are your words not mine. I am so loved by you. I thank you that I am a compassionate person. I’m a kind person. I’m a humble person. People are more significant than myself. I thank you that I am known for my gentleness and patience.’
‘Even though that person said that thing about me today, I forgive them. I don’t only forgive them, but I choose to delete it from my memory as love doesn’t archive past hurts.’
‘I’m excited to be like you today. Amen.’
Do you see the subtle difference? Take hold of your true identity, pray this daily, and your actions will start to align themselves with who you now see yourself as.
You’re not a rubbish Christian who can’t get it right. You’re a Christian in transition from your old self to your wonderful, new identity and you’ve been given the tools and the word to become that.
When an issue arises – which it will – you will remember, ‘hey I’m a gentle person, I’m known for my gentleness, I’m known for my kindness’ and it will be easier then to live by truth, rather than by your feelings.
I’m excited for your future.
Today I encourage you to pray Colossians 3:12-15. I believe as we do our part, we can ask God to empower us with his grace to make this an exciting reality in our day-to-day life. We need his power to achieve this goal.
Pray Colossians 3:12-15 every day this week in the manner shown in the devotional above.
Prayer walk your neighbourhood.
Pray for new Eden recruits.