It was the silliest thing, but it was driving me crazy. My computer kept switching to an Internet server other than ours. I’d click to our server in the tool bar, but inevitably my computer would revert back to a satellite server. This kept happening until I realized I needed to make a change within my computer’s system preferences. From the 16 options available (a product of living in a high rise), I needed to choose our Internet provider as the default. One click put an end to a daily frustration.
This got me thinking. A default is an option that is selected automatically unless an alternative is specified (freedictionary.com). What default is the “system preference” of my mind set to? When frustration comes, when circumstances look fearful, when weariness or sadness or disappointment come, where do my thoughts most readily go? Am I allowing my emotions, old patterns or flesh-driven thinking to dictate my thoughts? Or have I intentionally set the default of my mind on the “system preference” God has established?” Is my default, is your default?
“Whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things [fix your minds on them]” (Philippians 4:8).
This can be such a struggle for me that I recently bought a canvas with that verse painted on it to hang in our laundry room — a room I frequent. God told the Israelites to tie His commands as symbols on their hands, to bind them on their foreheads and write them on their doorposts and gates (Deuteronomy 6:8-9). I need to do that too. We all need constant reminders of where to set the default of our mind, for aren’t we prone to let the nearest and most accessible “server” dictate what we think?
The consequences of being lax in this area are life-altering:
“So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace” (Romans 8:6).
I want life and peace! We receive both by intentionally setting the default of our mind on what God says versus what we might want to think and feel. Furthermore, in so setting the default of our mind, we are choosing the direct path of being transformed into the image of Jesus. Scripture says we are transformed by the renewing of our minds. We are made new as we think new, God-ordained thoughts (from Romans 12:-1-2). This is life. This is peace.
So I ask you: Where is the default of your mind set? When people disappoint, or even intentionally harm you, have you predetermined to set your mind to:
Love: Not be easily angered or keep a record of wrongs, but to believe all things, hope all things, endure all things, protect them and persevere with them, be patient and kind to them (from 1 Corinthians 13:4-7)?
Have you preselected the response of:
Forgiving as God has forgiven you, of bearing with the struggles of others and seeking unity with them (Colossians 3:13)?
When God seems far, His answers to your prayers and His provision of your needs seem slow in coming, have you set your default to:
I will wait, I will believe, for my God WILL supply all my needs according to His riches in Christ Jesus (Isaiah 40:31 and Philippians 4:19). Will you hope and believe that God will give you all good things, that He will cause all things to work for your good? (Psalm 84:11 and Romans 8:28).
We get to choose where we set the default of our mind. You can “click” over, set your mind and discipline yourself to think on all God says is true. When you do, you will receive life; you will be made new.
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