I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.2 Timothy 4:7-8 (NIV)
Thinking Like Christ
A. A. Allen said, “Before one can walk as Christ walked, and talk as He talked, he must first begin to think as Christ thought.”
In order to run like Christ, we need to think like Christ.
We need to have the mind of Christ when it comes to our physical fitness and our spiritual fitness.
As we reflect on the Easter season, we’re reminded of Christ being overwhelmed by his emotions.
He was experiencing fear, anxiety & loneliness but is heartened by His change in His thinking, and His willingness to run His race and finish well.
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.Romans 12:2 (NIV)
I have experienced the exact same shift in the past 8 months but it wasn’t as quick as Christ’s shift, that’s for sure!
When I left my ex-husband 8 months ago due to domestic violence, the thought of raising 4 children on my own and having to start over was absolutely terrifying.
I felt extremely lonely, anxious and displayed various symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Even though I was no longer experiencing the emotional, verbal, psychological & mental abuse, I was struggling because I couldn’t understand why it was all happening to me and my kids, again.
You see, I left in 2018 for 2 years and my ex-husband and I reconciled because we thought we had a family miracle, due to his heart change.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t true.
I went from being a joyful, homeschool mom that was on fire for God, to an anxious, angry, broken victim of abuse the second time.
Needless to say, in the times of my tremendous agony & suffering, I was not able to shift my focus & change my thinking.
I was not able to continue to run my race.
I knew deep in my heart I wanted to follow Christ but the influence of the world and ungodly advice was clouding my thinking.
In fact, I had to get to the point where I realised that certain things in my life such as anger, hurt, addictions & trauma were keeping me from running to Christ and running like Christ.
Change Your Route
I had to change my thinking and change my route. I had to renew my thinking & focus on His good, pleasing & perfect will. I had to make a choice and ultimately, I asked myself two serious questions:
- Do I want to run like Christ & finish my race well, spiritually?
- Do I want to run like Christ & finish my race well, physically?
You see, before I left my ex-husband, not only did I stop running spiritually, I stopped running physically just as I stopped reading my Bible and praying. It just seemed too much and I didn’t feel capable.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,Ephesians 3:20( NIV)
It was this verse that changed my thinking!
Indeed, Christ’s power is in me and would get me over the finish line!
Finish Like Christ
In order to turn around, I had to take every thought captive and align them with what was true of Christ if I wanted to….finish like Christ!
“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”2 Corinthians 10:5 (NIV)
I had to remind myself that the power of the Holy Spirit was in me and that I could do anything.
I had to start believing again!
I had to fight the good fight.
I had to finish the race. I had to keep the faith.
The finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross was my example to follow.
He did the unthinkable when He didn’t know if He could.
In His human form, He was fearful, anxious and lonely but in His divinity, He was strong, submissive & sacrificial.
We need to remember we can do all things through Christ Who strengthens us, we need to be submissive to His will and sacrifice the things that are holding us back from finishing our race.
Your faith in Jesus, the power of the Holy Spirit and God’s hand on your life will help you to finish well.
Like Christ, you will need to change your thinking and focus on thinking like Him, talking like Him and running like Him.
REFLECTION AND RESPONSE
- Are you thinking like Christ and running like Christ? How can you work towards that?
- Spend some time in prayer and ask God to show you the areas of your life where you need to change your route and finish your race well.