Renewed In The Spirit


“And be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:23-24).  Ever since I was young, I have always been involved in church. I attended Sabbath School, led out in vespers, participated in the worship service, and even preached a few sermons before finishing high school. I was very privileged to have been raised in a strong Christian family who instilled their values and teachings in me at a young age. However, I was in no way perfect.

Like many youth, I struggled with pornography. I fought against this lust and would pray asking God to take away the thoughts and to give me a new mind free of these carnal desires, but my request seemed to fall on deaf ears. I thought that it was something wrong with me and began to hate myself, and I fell into a minor state of depression. I also never had a deep nor consistent devotional life up to my high school years. I knew all the stories and doctrines and believed in them, yet I did not have a real relationship with God. It was simply a head knowledge relationship. I did not know God for myself. The God I knew was a God in theory, a powerful and loving, yet distant Being.

I knew what God was supposed to look and feel like but had never experienced it for myself. I did desire it greatly but did not know how to grasp it for myself. That was how I lived my life throughout high school, but God is a gracious God and worked in my life to begin showing Himself to me in a different light.

It began when I heard a story about a pastor. The pastor struggled with suicidal thoughts and had asked God countless times to take them away and give him a new mind, but to no avail. Eventually, the pastor yelled angrily at God asking why He had not answered his simple request. Then, the pastor heard the still small voice of God telling him: “I have given it to you. You simply have not accepted it yet.”

It was then that the pastor realized his fault and accepted his new mind and dedicated it to God. When the thoughts returned, the Holy Spirit prompted the pastor to speak these words to his thoughts: “This is a new mind given to me by God. You don’t belong here. In Jesus name, I rebuke you.” Then they disappeared. This pattern repeated a few times, but each time the thoughts left, the gap between the next wave of thoughts would grow larger and larger until they had fully disappeared.

I realized I was in the same position as that pastor. I had asked God for a new mind but had never accepted His gift. So, I did as the pastor did. I accepted God’s gift, dedicated my heart and mind to God, and rebuked the thoughts that came. As soon as I had finished my prayer, I felt as if a heavy burden had been lifted off my shoulders. This was the turning point in my life when I began to truly develop my relationship with God. I directly experienced His love, I began to have meaningful morning devotions, and I knew my worth in the eyes of God.

God wishes to help you with whatever you are struggling with. He has in His hands a new heart and is waiting for you to accept His gift and dedicate it to Him. So, I encourage you to get to know the God I know, the all-powerful and loving Savior, Who has given us victory over sin through His Son, Jesus Christ.

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