Thursday, June 14, 2007

Renew Your Mind

In the book of Romans we read that we should not be "conformed to this world." [Romans 12:2] We also know from Scripture that we are to consecrate ourselves in truth. [John 17:17] Understanding how this translates to how we live our lives can be transforming. Many would believe that these Scriptures merely call us to avoid sin, but I think that, as the passage in Romans says, we are to totally "renew our minds." It is extremely difficult to live among our friends, neighbors, even our extended family and other Catholics, and not be influenced by worldly ideas and practices. It can be even more difficult to constantly find ourselves swimming against the tide as we live out our lives striving towards holiness.

I think we receive the graces to lead holy lives by filling our minds with those things that are Godly and true. If we are immersing ourselves in prayer, spiritual reading, and partaking in the sacraments, our spirits and minds will be disposed to holy thoughts, wisdom and understanding. If, however, we are filling our minds with junk women's magazines, romance novels, and television, our minds will not be as easily influenced by Godly things. We will be constantly fighting the worldly zeitgeist that sways our thinking.

The truth is that a worldly way of thinking, leads to a worldly way of acting. Maybe it does not lead to apparent or outright sin, as we think of sinful acts, but filling our minds with worldliness brings confusion and an incongruity between what we desire, which is hopefully joy, peace, and holiness, and what we have the courage to live. If we allow our minds and spirits to be weak, through lack of prayer or worldly distraction, we tend to take our cues from the people around us, not from the leading of the Spirit.

So then, dear sisters, I extol you....."Do not conform yourself to this age, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect." Romans 12:2

Peace, Hope