Renewing My Mind
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
Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit in me. -Psalm 51:10
May my meditation be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord. -Psalm 104:34
Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on the mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, -Matthew 14:22-23
I’m currently just over 37 weeks pregnant, and I am choosing to rest, relax, and prepare for this little one to arrive. And this is HARD for me. I’m always moving- doing something, planning, reading, (yes, I’m taking time to write this blog post), and it’s hard to admit that I need to slow down and take a break most days. But, I’m at the point in my pregnancy where my body is telling me, “You have to take a break!” I physically and mentally need the rest at this stage.
Plus, I know all too well that when the baby arrives, I will need to take all the rest I can get!
These past few weeks, God has placed on my heart the importance of just spending time in the quiet- to check my thoughts. With that said, I’ve realized the one time of day where I can really check my thoughts is when taking a bath. I’m away from all the distractions in my house, and I’m simply still.
It’s been wonderful to take the time to really “not do anything” and to reset my thoughts.
The Western mindset is driven on multi-tasking, always thinking, always doing, always filling our brains with something- reading a book, checking Facebook, binge-watching Netflix, looking for the next thing to clean, staying up on the news, replying to work e-mails, addressing concerns at home, and so on.
It’s not that these “things” or tasks are bad, but what thoughts are we training our brains to think when we’re constantly active? Where is the time for reflection?
Meditating and relaxing has allowed me to be focused on the stillness of not “doing something” and allowing my thoughts to be focused on breathing, relaxing, and resetting my heart- being completely present in the moment and letting God in.
It’s also allowed me to see where my thoughts tend to wander and what worries or concerns seem to surface.
What’s been so amazing with resetting my mind has been the realization that I need to check my thoughts often throughout the day: Is my mind being transformed by the power of God, or am I succumbing to the thoughts of this world? Am I filling my mind with God’s truth about myself and others, or am I being shaped by fallacies? What am I not letting go of? What am I trying to control?
This has been especially important for me to do in this moment of time with my dad’s cancer getting worse, a precious baby girl arriving this month, taking care of a toddler, and just navigating the daily stresses of life with being soooo pregnant. It’s not just a lot physically, but it’s a lot emotionally to take on.
Without these heart checks, meditation, and reflection times I know that I would go full swing into the “next task”. I wouldn’t stop to evaluate how I’m doing emotionally. It’s not easy to schedule a time to do “nothing”. But, it’s gotten easier as I’ve held on to the importance of having the quiet time multiple days a week.
Honestly, this relaxation and meditation time has helped me to keep a healthier balance to prepare for my final stages of pregnancy and labor. It’s also helped me to keep my eyes focused on who God says I am, and not what the world says I am.
It has helped me to see where my fears creep in, and what I need to pray about- what I need to accept, let go of, or where I need to actively change with the power of Christ.
I’m not escaping from God, but I’m choosing to stop and let Him in- to do a great and changing work in me.
2018 has really been a year where God continues to place the importance of “being kind to myself” on my heart. He’s reminded me to rest, rest, and rest again (I need lots of reminders). With lots of changes coming in the near future, I pray that God will continue to work on my heart and mind in order to renew and transform them.