Grow Deep - Spiritual Conversations Edition - Week 1
Week 1: February 2-8
What Are You Thinking?
Memory Verse: “Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things… and the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:8-9 ESV
I am a classic overthinker. With any decision or problem, I’ve researched endless options, probably made a spreadsheet of my discoveries, and mulled over various courses of action ad nauseum. Big or small, significant or mundane, no subject lacks attention from my hyper-analytical mind.
Overthinking causes problems, though. I fear making the wrong decision. I get lost in plans for the future rather than living in the present. I ruminate over everyday difficulties, at times allowing them to dominate conversations unnecessarily. In overthinking, I focus and rely on myself rather than on God.
We can’t know all God’s thoughts, but we do receive glimmers of His thinking, especially through the perfect example of Jesus. Look over the pages of the Gospels and see what Jesus thought about. He thought of others and their needs. He boldly taught and admonished people to live godly lives but also spoke of mercy, grace and forgiveness. He proclaimed the kingdom of heaven. And He did all of this with friends, strangers, even enemies.
While God’s thinking is holy and pure, ours isn’t. When we feed our minds the mental equivalent of junk food, junk comes out in our conversations. But if we strengthen our minds with God’s Word, worship, prayer and encouragement from other Christians, the results are different. Rather than thinking about ourselves, we consider the welfare and comfort of others. Instead of harboring resentment, we communicate forgiveness. In lieu of confining God to Sunday morning, we look for “God sightings” in our everyday lives. Not keeping silent, we share what Jesus means to us. When we stop crowding God out of our thoughts, we allow the Spirit to speak through us, conveying much needed joy, peace and hope into our broken world.
Sunday, February 2
Read: Psalm 139:17
“How precious to me are Your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!” ESV
Reflect: Which of God’s thoughts have stuck with you? Why?
Monday, February 3
Read: Ephesians 4:23-24
“Be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” ESV
Reflect: What does your “new self” look like today? In what ways has the spirit of your mind been renewed or would you like it to be renewed?
Tuesday, February 4
Read: Psalm 19:14
“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” ESV
Reflect: What obstacles in daily life can cause your thoughts and speech to be unacceptable? What helps your words and meditations to be acceptable to the Lord?
Wednesday, February 5
Read: Philippians 4:8-9
“Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things… and the God of peace will be with you.” ESV
Reflect: What is on your mind lately that conforms to the description in these verses? Whom can you uplift with these thoughts?
Thursday, February 6
Read: Romans 8:27
“He who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.” ESV
Reflect: How do you believe you have experienced the Spirit interceding for you? In those circumstances, what feelings have you had as a result?
Friday, February 7
Read: Colossians 3:1-2
“Seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above.” ESV
Reflect: How do you go about setting your mind on things that are above? What impact do you experience when you think in this way?
Saturday, February 8
Read: Psalm 139:23
“Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts!” ESV
Reflect: What do you think about God’s knowing your heart and mind? Why would we ask God to search, know and try these parts of us?