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Books for those in ministry organizations who desire to take their leadership, teams, governance, and ministry effectiveness to the next level.

19 Jul '09

Films we Play in our Minds

Posted by T.J. Addington in The heart
We live in three dimensions. The first is the most obvious - the world in which we live and the circumstances in which we find ourselves. Sometimes good, sometimes bad and sometimes ugly.

How we respond to the first dimension has a lot to do with a second dimension that lurks in our unconscious mind: films from our past whose imprint has left its mark. The pastor who as a child was constantly ridiculed now finds himself trying to assert his authority through autocratic behaviors. The child who was punished for minor infractions finds it hard to believe that God is a God of grace and assumes that God sees him like that harsh parent. The woman who was sexually abused struggles with self image and personal worth.

These films that play in our subconscious impact how we interact with people, how we see ourselves, how we see God and many of the addictive or problematic behaviors we struggle with are a result of that second, subconscious dimension. None of us are immune from its reality. In fact, the buttons that someone pushes that cause us to lash out in anger or stab us with pain are indicators of that second dimension at work. Something in our past triggered an emotion in our present.

A strategy of the evil one is simply to understand those films from our past that cause us discouragement or pain or acting out and simply to play them for us over and over to our detriment. If he doesn't do it for us, we do it for ourselves.

Enter the third dimension which is the spiritual dimension and while hidden, as real as the first and the answer for the second. "But because of his great love for us, God who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions - it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Ephesians 2:4-10.

That is a passage worth committing to memory and coming back to on a daily basis. It changes our perspective on the issues of life we face - the good bad and the ugly. It transforms the films we play in our minds for we are seated in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, trophies of His grace and mercy for all to see, we have been called to relationship with Him and work for Him.

Those films? We now see our past and our present and our future in a different light. Jesus gives us a new reality and a new set of films to play - that reflect his high and important and grace filled calling on our lives. The old films have been replaced by His films.

Don't play the old films. Allow the grace of God to filter deep in your conscience and the place of honor in which you sit in Christ Jesus impact your view of life, your view of you, your view of God and your view of your calling. The old has passed and a new day has dawned.