Renew Your Mind - iBelieve Truth - April 25, 2024

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"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

“My effort is not good enough.”

This is a lie I believed for many years of my life. This lie began at the age of 13. That June, I prepared to graduate from 8th grade and enter high school. Because I was always good at school and got good grades, I was in the running for Salutatorian of my class. Most of my friends thought for sure I had earned this coveted accolade. So, when the principal got up after our graduation practice and announced the winner of valedictorian, it was the same girl we all thought it would be. “The Salutatorian is…” the principal declared.

Except it wasn't my name.

Devastated, I looked straight ahead at the principal, as all the other students’ faces turned to look to me. Desperate not to cry, I buttoned my lower lip and made it through the rest of the announcements. I went back to school, gathered my things, and walked out the door, grateful I didn't melt down in front of all my friends. That was until the girl who did get Salutatorian stopped me in the hallway. “I'm sorry you didn't get it. I thought for sure you had it.” With that, I wailed and left the elementary school hallway. My mother, waiting to pick me up, saw my tears. When I told her I had not made Salutatorian, she angrily named off many reasons why I had disappointed her. 

That was the first day when I believed my effort was not good enough. Not a believer, this was a lie that followed me throughout most of my life. If I'm honest, it's a lie I still battle in my mind when things don't go my way or I deserve more recognition than my deeds received. 

The above passage is a warning to the Roman church about the importance of renewing our minds. According to this passage, it is important to renew our minds so we may be transformed. Transformation cannot take place if our minds are filled with lies about who God is, who we are, and our identity in him. Our minds must be completely renewed for us to be transformed into Christlike believers. 

Thoughts lead to feelings, which lead to action. Not only is it important for us to renew our minds so we may be transformed into Christ-likeness, but it is also important so we can test and prove God's will. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to discern what the world says is right versus what God says is right. However, we do have a few tools at our disposal to help us discern right from wrong. We have the Word of God, the Holy Spirit, and the community of believers.

One way we’re able to renew our minds is through the Word of God. As we read and study the Bible for ourselves, it helps us shift our minds from erroneous thoughts to ones that are aligned with the Word of God. Not only this, but it helps us solidify our identity in him. This would have helped me immensely when I was 13 and putting my identity in my accomplishments rather than in who I was as God's child. Now that I'm older, I understand my position as God's child and heir to the throne. 

Renewing our minds not only leads us to transformative behavior in the name of Christ but allows us to test and discern what the will of God is for our lives. Rid yourself of anything that may cause you to have thoughts that do not align with Scripture, and you'll be well on your way for the Holy Spirit to transform your life.

Father, help us to renew our minds. Allow us to rid our minds of any thoughts that do not align with your Word. Help us fill our minds with the Word of God so we can be transformed into lives worthy of your calling. Amen. 

Photo Credit: ©GettyImages/Prostock-Studio

Writer Michelle LazurekMichelle S. Lazurek is a multi-genre award-winning author, speaker, pastor's wife, and mother. She is a literary agent for Wordwise Media Services and a certified writing coach. Her new children’s book Who God Wants Me to Be encourages girls to discover God’s plan for their careers. When not working, she enjoys sipping a Starbucks latte, collecting 80s memorabilia, and spending time with her family and her crazy dog. For more info, please visit her website

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Originally published Thursday, 25 April 2024.