What would you do if you could change the world? What would you say if I told you that you can? At the risk of sounding like a crazy lady in the midst of inflation, a 2+ year pandemic, world disorder and division in our country, let us not forget that these types of struggles have happened before and the world has kept turning.
I lost my own great-grandmother Maude due to the 20th century influenza pandemic. Her death put my grandmother on a trajectory of pain and tragedy, one that left intergenerational trauma and sin in its wake. Yet, my grandmother was still able to raise her children, live a full life and see two of her great-grandchildren before dying. She was not a perfect person, none of us are; she made mistakes and certainly caused her own amount of trouble. In spite of it all, I only remember her having the joy of Jesus. In the decades since her death, I have found out just how much tragedy she survived. It gives me pause to think about what this generation is experiencing because of COVID and how that may be similar.
I have written before about my journey with chronic pain. After all the unsuccessful doctor visits with rheumatology, orthopedics, oncology, pain medicine, acupuncture, chiropractors, psychiatrists, therapists, and physical therapists I took matter into my own hands with God. I started caring for my body, mind and soul while leaning more into Jesus. I discovered that strong muscles are happy muscles; this goes for every muscle in your body! From your brain, to your heart, to your tippy toes!!
The thinking muscles of our brains need to be well nourished. The old computer mantra GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) is an excellent characterization of the phenomenon that occurs in the brain. Surround yourself with negativity: negative people, negative television shows, negative social media posts, or negative music and that is how your brain will think. As a man thinks, so he is (paraphrase Proverbs 23:7a).
A gift is for sharing. Think of the last gift you gave that you were really excited to give! What if the truths of Christ were treated as the greatest gift that could ever be given? Well, it is!! The skeptic may say that I am being too narrow in my thinking, the truths of Christianity can’t be the only way. The last time I check 2+2 equals 4, and ONLY 4. How is that for narrow truth? Truth is narrow. Either Jane Doe committed a crime or she didn’t. Either you can drink poison and it will kill you or not. Either the sun rises every morning or it doesn’t. Like a vampire blinded by the light are those who choose to ignore the truth of the Son. We must strengthen our brains with the Good News. For a refreshing take on this please see Andy Stanley’s You Tube video titled “Is Christianity Good?” from Dec. 19, 2020.
You cannot run for any great distance with your head down; oxygen will be depleted from your lungs, causing you to choke. How do you want to run your race? The writer of Hebrews penned, “Let us lay aside every hindrance and sin that so easily ensnares us. Let us run with endurance the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes [up] on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith.” (12:1b-2a, CSB). Are there barriers in your way? Only God can renew our minds and fight our battles with success, but we have to let Him. Changing the world starts in your mind. “Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12.2, CSB). Then pay it forward…sharing is caring!!!