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Thinking Differently

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts
The Truth Network Radio
February 15, 2021 7:00 pm

Thinking Differently

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts

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February 15, 2021 7:00 pm

During college, I spent a good chunk of a summer in Venezuela. The food was astounding, the people delightful, the weather and hospitality beautiful. Within the first day or two, however, I recognized that my views on time management weren’t shared by my new friends. If we planned to have lunch at noon, this meant anywhere between 12:00 and 1:00 p.m. The same for meetings or travel: timeframes were approximations without rigid punctuality. I learned that my idea of “being on time” was far more culturally formed than I’d realized.

All of us are shaped by the cultural values that surround us, usually without us ever noticing. Paul calls this cultural force “the world” (Romans 12:2). Here, “world” doesn’t mean the physical universe, but rather refers to the ways of thinking pervading our existence. The world refers to the unquestioned assumptions and guiding ideals handed to us simply because we live in a particular place and time.

Paul warns us to be vigilant to not “conform to the pattern of this world” (Romans 12:2). Instead, we must be “transformed by the renewing of [our] mind” (v. 2). Rather than passively taking on whatever ways of thinking and believing that engulf us, we’re called to actively pursue God’s way of thinking and to learn how to understand His “good, pleasing and perfect will” (v. 2). May we learn to follow God rather than every other voice. 

           

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Welcome to today's encouragement from Our Daily Bread. Today's reading, titled Thinking Differently, was written by Wynn Collier. During college, I spent a good chunk of a summer in Venezuela.

The food was astounding, the people delightful, the weather and hospitality beautiful. Within the first day or two, however, I recognized that my views on time management weren't shared by my new friends. If we planned to have lunch at noon, this meant anywhere between 12 o'clock and 1 o'clock p.m. The same for meetings or travel.

Timeframes were approximations without rigid punctuality. I learned that my idea of being on time was far more culturally formed than I'd realized. All of us are shaped by the cultural values that surround us, usually without us ever noticing. Paul, in Romans 12, calls this cultural force the world. Here, world doesn't mean the physical universe, but rather refers to the ways of thinking pervading our existence.

It refers to the unquestioned assumptions and guiding ideals handed to us simply because we live in a particular place in time. Paul warns us to be vigilant, to not conform to the pattern of this world. Instead, we must be transformed by the renewing of our mind. Rather than passively taking on the ways of thinking and believing that engulf us, we're called to actively pursue God's way of thinking and to learn how to understand His good, pleasing and perfect will. May we learn to follow God rather than every other voice.

Today's Our Daily Bread devotional scripture reading is from Romans chapter 12 verses 1 through 3. Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God. This is your true and proper worship. 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. For by the grace given me, I say to every one of you, do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. Let's pray.

Dear God, we're all formed by our cultures more than we even know, and while that's not always a bad thing, it's easy for us to develop attitudes and expectations that aren't honoring to you or beneficial for us. We pray that you would lead us in every word and action, and that our lives would reflect your love and wisdom. Thank you, Lord. It's in Jesus' name we pray. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-24 13:30:47 / 2023-12-24 13:32:20 / 2

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