Tag Archive | Spiritual renewal

Psalm 51:10 ” Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”

I listened to a song the other day…its title a declaration that a lot of us might not say with any conviction…”I am ready for the Storm.”  Now I realize that it’s not if but when trials will come into my life…but to proclaim that I’m ready for them gives me pause.  So how can I prepare?  The Psalmist here shows us that it’s the daily renewing of our heart and mind that will enable us to do this.  Our faith is renewed and given new life daily…ever-deepening, ever-increasing,  as we put more and more of our trust in the Lord.  This divine restoration is spoken of in Isaiah 40:31, ” But those who put their hope in the Lord will renew their strength.”  So I may not like it, but I can now say with certainty… Yes Lord, with Your help, I’m ready for the storm.

Romans 12:2 ” Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

Everyday your character is being shaped… by the world or by God.  We allow generational chains of bondage to influence how we think…molding us into people we don’t want to become.  We allow the world’s dominance to sway how we behave around others…even when it’s contrary to how we really feel inside.  Spiritual renewal of your mind is a determined process you must undertake yourself.  It’s an evaluation of God’s Will – His good and well-pleasing Will for your life –  as you allow your character to undergo a metamorphosis, a regeneration of how you think.  Don’t be squeezed into the world’s mold for you.  Decide today what’s going to be shaping your mind…the world or God.

II Corinthians 3:18 ” And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, Who is the Spirit.”

Jesus spoke of this glory in John 17:22, when He said, “I have given them the glory that You gave Me that they may be one as we are one.”  When we become Christians, we undergo a spiritual transformation…a invisible process, a metamorphosis if you will, where our very character is changed.  And by the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit  we become a mirror, reflecting Jesus to others.  But you’ll also notice that this Scripture says we are “being” transformed with “ever-increasing” glory…which means His work in us will never be completely done until that day we meet Him face to face.

Acts 8:36 ” As they traveled along the road, they came to some water and the eunuch said, ‘Look, here is water. Why shouldn’t I be baptized?’ “

Philip, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, had found a Ethiopian eunuch traveling the road between Jerusalem and Gaza.  The eunuch was reading the book of Isaiah, but was perplexed, so Philip started with that scripture, (Isaiah 53:7-8) and explained to the eunuch the good news of Jesus.  Later as they traveled together, they came upon some water and it’s here the eunuch asks, “Why shouldn’t I be baptized?”  Now in some late manuscripts verse 37 is added which says, “Philip said, ‘If you believe with all your heart, you may.’  The eunuch answered, ‘I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.’ ”  Baptism is the public demonstration of a personal decision…it symbolizes spiritual renewal, forgiveness of sins, adoption by God and eternal life.  If you are a Believer but have never been baptized…ask yourself the same question the eunuch did, “Why shouldn’t I be baptized?”

Luke 15:24 ” For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found…”

If you think about it…we’re all like the prodigal son.  We were all spiritually dead – separated from God the Father, with no hope of eternal life…when we were  made live again,  by the blood of Jesus Christ.  For we all had wandered away from our Heavenly Father,  just like the prodigal son…and just like the prodigal son, when we had come to our senses in the middle of that pig pen –  we realized we couldn’t make it on our own.  That’s when we returned.  We returned to a loving Father with outstretched arms, rushing to meet us and draw us to Him.

Matthew 3:6 ” Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.”

Baptism…just as during the time of John the Baptist, is a public action,  for an internal, personal decision for Christ.  It symbolizes the spiritual cleansing through the forgiveness of sins to those who repent and believe in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Baptism is part of the Great Commission that Jesus gave us in Matthew 28:18, “Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…”   As a new Christian, you don’t have to be perfect before you can be baptized…you don’t have to have it “all together” and cleaned up prior either.  Baptism is a public “Just as I am”  coming to Jesus moment.

I Corinthians 12:12-13 ” The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body – whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free – and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.”

Here Paul is comparing the human body with the body of Christ…the Church.  Just as the many parts of the human body  work together in  complete harmony…each with its own unique purpose, the body of Christ – the Church and its many parts need to come together in like-mindedness also.  And just like the human body, one part cannot work in isolation from the rest.  That would be like one Sunday morning your heart getting up and deciding  not to be part of your body that day!  You may think that your presence at Church doesn’t matter…but it does…the whole body suffers when one part is absent.