A Change of Mind? Really?

Okay, I admit it. I’m all too frequently a bit “slow on the uptake” as they say. However, on occasion I’m worse than “a bit slow.” There are times when I just don’t get it; whatever “it” is. In this case there are three “its”; two big “its” and one huge “it”, that I have just now begun to understand. I stumbled upon the three “its” in preparing to create the current masterpiece you are now reading.
I had been mentally ruminating on how to follow up on last week’s entry for several days and had decided to dig into my stack of sermon notes and then look through my “Nothing Notebook” for thoughts on “Jesus as my brother”, when I came across my sermon notes dated 8/12/12. My plan went up in smoke. There was this one simple line that made me feel as if I suddenly got “it.”… Another, “I could have had a V8” moment. What I’d written was this: “Pray for a change of mind.” Below that was, ”You’re where you are because that’s what you expect and accept.” I finally got “it” … all three “its”.
The first “big it” involves the word hope. I have spent a lifetime, my lifetime, living with the wrong definition of the word hope. My mind has been making assumptions and calculations about the future with the wrong processor chip for hope installed. I have no idea how it happened; none whatsoever. The processor chip had been in place until today when I finally decided to actually look up the word; in my bible first and then in the dictionary.
When I checked my bible’s “Biblical Cyclopedic Index I found “hope” defined as “the expectation of future good.” That definition did not mesh with the definition in my head, so I decided that Mr. Webster would be the one to set things straight and confirm my long held and ingrained understanding of the word “hope.” Out came my Webster’s two-volume dictionary, and along with it the realization that I had lived my entire life with the wrong understanding; the wrong “hope” processor chip in my head. Mr. Webster agreed with the Biblical Cyclopedic Index. Do you have any idea what it’s like to wake up to the realization that you’ve spent a lifetime misunderstanding and misusing a word like hope?
The use, to which I’d been putting that word, was basically this: “wishful thinking.” As a result, much like the old saying, “if wishes were horses beggars would ride,” I got nowhere. To be honest, I’d actually wondered for years why Paul had included the word “hope” in 1 Corinthians 13:13 when he said “There are three things that will endure – faith, hope and love – and the greatest of these is love.” With my definition of “hope” it seemed as if he was saying, “faith, wishful thinking and love,” and not “faith, the expectation of future good and love.” Well, now of course, “hope” did belong with faith and love, especially faith. That awareness then led to the second “it.”
The second “big it” was this. The expectations I’d lived with most of my life were so deeply ingrained that in spite of all the mental exercises intended to instill positive thinking, I was unconsciously expecting and then accepting much less than stellar results. I had become so used to outcomes which were less than what I’d “hoped” for that those results became a reason for me to assume that I didn’t deserve what I’d “hoped” for or … that I’d misunderstood what I was supposed to do to receive my blessing. All this was in spite of all the self-improvement, positive thinking, Psycho-Cybernetics input I’d absorbed over the years. So, I would pray for better understanding and increased faith, so I could eventually walk on water. That was “big it” number two.
“It” number three, the “huge it,” actually had led to the two “big its”. I have learned to pray about practically everything. I pray about, and for a lot, especially things like wisdom so I could understand what it was that Abba expected of me. I’d come to know the true meaning of being changed from the inside out, in the way I related to Him and His creation, but it had never, not once occurred to me to pray for “a change of mind.” My heart had changed dramatically and the way I thought about all the rest of His creation had changed in the process, but all those changes were rooted in my heart. When I read that simple sentence today I suddenly realized that the deep recesses of my mind were the problem and not my heart.
And that brought me to a sermon note from 11/11/12 which read: “Be transformed by a renovation of the mind. My experience in the kitchen and bath remodel business taught me that the first step in a “renovation” was frequently preceded by a degree of demolition. I’m pleased to announce that the mental wrecking crew is already at work.

4 thoughts on “A Change of Mind? Really?

  1. I write a comment each time I especially enjoy a article on a site or if I have something
    to add to the conversation. Usually it is caused by the passion displayed in the post I browsed.
    And on this post A Change of Mind? Really? – Georgia Lee McGowenGeorgia Lee McGowen. I was actually moved enough to drop a commenta
    response 😉 I do have some questions for you if it’s allright.
    Is it just me or do some of these remarks appear like written by
    brain dead visitors? 😛 And, if you are writing on additional places, I’d like
    to follow anything fresh you have to post. Could you list every one of all your social pages
    like your linkedin profile, Facebook page or twitter

    • Thank you for your interest although I wouldn’t consider any of the responses that I approve to be from “brain dead” people. As long as a comment is not obscene or extremely derogatory I will generally approve. Believe me when I say that I do get some rather nasty comments from time to time. Everything I post here gets re-posted automatically to my Facebook page, Georgia Lee McGowen and to my Twitter page under the same name. My memoir “Dear Mom and Dad, You Don’t Know Me, But …” originally published and still available through iUniverse Publishing is soon to be re-released by TopLink Publishing and will be followed with in a year by the companion story of the journey of my faith.

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