Saturday, October 13, 2012

What are you Thinking?

Rom 12:3  For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
I like what Ann Landers said about what people are thinking: At age 20 we worry about what others think of us. At 40 we don't care what they think of us. At 60 we discover they haven't been thinking of us at all.
I am not sure who told the following, but it reflects the unrealistic thinking people have about themselves:
A woman was working in her front yard one day planting new bushes and flowers. She was dressed in her work clothes and had dirt all over her hands. She looked up and saw a moving van pulling into the driveway next door. Behind the van was a car and a nice looking family got out of the car.

The new family noticed the woman and came over to introduce themselves to her. They spoke for a few moments and the woman in the yard invited the new family over for a welcome dinner that evening.

Then, she went inside and told her husband to start getting ready, and she began dying her hair. As she was getting dressed and putting on her false eyelashes and false fingernails the husband asked her why she was so dolled up just for a dinner. She told him how they had seen her all dirty before, but now she wanted them to see the ’real’ her!

This lady exemplifies the American churchgoer today. We get ready for church and put on our Sunday go-to-meeting clothes and all too often, we hide the real us. Many go to church regularly, they know much about what is expected of them, but of all the things they do know, they don’t know who they really are.
Our verse tells us how we are to think about ourselves:
1. Think Humbly. "...not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think;"
Illusions of grandeur could probably rightly be called delusions in most of our cases. It is said that no man is more out of tune than when he is blowing his own horn. It is good for us to remember that we are only one of 6 billion on this earth. Basically, we are made of dust and we are going back to dust. The only thing that makes us special is the grace of God, and that is a totally undeserved commodity.

2. Think Soberly. "…but to think soberly" The word soberly means that we are to think sound-mindedly, or sanely about ourselves. You have been to the carnival where you see yourself in the mirrors which distort your reflection. One mirror makes you look several feet taller than you actually are, another, a couple of feet shorter. One makes you look grotesquely obese, another, anorexic. But actually, people do see themselves in dreadfully distorted ways. Some see themselves as fat, unattractive blobs unworthy of anyone's admiration, others as God's gift to mankind and deserving of everybody's adulation. Some view themself as low down, good-for-nothings, stupid and unworthy. Others tend to believe they know everything and are looking for opportunities to bless folks with their opinion. But we ought to sober up and think sanely about ourselves.

3. Think Practically.  "…according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith." The truth is, if you are a child of God, He has specially gifted you by pouring a measure of grace into you. He expects a good return on His investment into you. The spiritual gift you have been granted (see verses 6-8) is for the work of the ministry. Think practically by determining what it is you are gifted to do in ministry and then develop and use your gift to its fullest potential.

Finally, when it comes to how we think, Paul gives some wise words of advice in the
second chapter of Philippians. 

     2 Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. 3 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. 4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. 5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

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