Decisiveness vs. Double-mindedness Make the decision to change"The ability to finalize difficult decisions based on the will and ways of God" (IBLP)
It is hard to make the decision to change. We are called to be strong for the Lord. Yet to become strong for the Lord is a process. It doesn’t happen overnight. Believers need to renew their minds with the word of God (Romans 12:2). For such change to take place (in any area of life) there needs to be a decision to undergo the process of change, so that the end result can be obtained.
Believers need to replace the old way of thinking into God's way of thinking through His word, the Bible. When we think like the Lord, we will manifest the strength of the Lord. Our strength will affect our prayer life.
To renew our mind and pray takes the character quality of decisiveness. And when we pray in harmony with God's word things will change.
Our prayers must match His word, for change to take place, because God is watching over His word to perform it, not our opinions. Jeremiah 1:12 states clearly, "for I am watching over my word to perform it." RSV
A renewed mind will cause the believer to become effective in their prayer life. James 5:16 reminds us that, "The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much." NKJV
To help us further understand consider the analogy of petrified wood. Romans chapter 12 begins with a powerful word picture for us as believers. Verses 1-2 read, “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.”
Now picture a petrified forest. The trees of which have turned completely into stone by the process of permineralization. All their organic materials have been replaced with minerals, while retaining the original wood structure. Within a century these now petrified trees stand firm and permanent. Their branches are no longer blown and tossed in the winds of time. They are testaments to a powerful process of change.
Likewise, Paul ushers us to live strong lives for the Lord, offering our bodies to be living sacrifices; unlike the rest of the world. To stand as a testament to the changes only God can bring to our lives through His truth. Let’s take a closer look at how this process occurs.
Petrified wood (from the Greek root petro meaning "rock" or "stone"; literally "wood turned into stone"). The petrifaction process occurs underground, when wood becomes buried under sediment and is initially preserved due to a lack of oxygen which inhibits aerobic decomposition. Mineral-laden water flowing through the sediment deposits minerals in the plant's cells and as the plant's lignin and cellulose decay, a stone mould forms in its place.
Notice that for change to take place things had to be replaced with minerals. For the believer’s transformation the “minerals” would be similar to God's word; daily renewing our minds with scripture and meditation on God’s truths. It is our choice to seek out time in our Father’s word… and it is so worth the reward – refreshment, strength and renewal of our minds.
Notice also that the process of petrifaction occurs underground. For the believer this would signify our prayer and study time. It is during these intimate and private times that God works in our hearts to reveal His goodness and glory. And again it is our choice to seek out this time with our Father… how amazing to know He hears each of our prayers.
Change takes a decision. It can be a difficult one to make. Yet we are called to it. God wills it and provides us the way. Renewing our minds (takes a decision). Praying to our Father (takes a decision). Studying His Word (takes a decision). Remember though, that when we do things God's way, strength will be manifested and change will take place.
"He who tills his land will have plenty of bread, but he who follows worthless pursuits has no sense." RSV
Consider the following: (Highlighted text added)
1 Kings 18:21
“And Eli'jah came near to all the people, and said, "How long will you go limping with two different opinions?” RSV
See account in I Kings 18:20-40 Click here