What thoughts go through your mind throughout the day? When you first wake up, what’s on your mind? As you drive to work or carpool, get moving on your chores around the house, what are you thinking?
Romans 8:5 says that, "Those who live according to the sinful nature havetheir minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordancewith the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. This causesme to wonder what is my mindset and what does my spirit desire?
I soon discovered that the mindset and desires of the sinful nature are not alwaysperversions. You don’t have to be a murderer, adulterer, or sexual pervertto have your mind set on the sinful nature. The sinful nature even desires todo good for others too. But the difference is that my purpose it to receive glorydirected at me. The sinful nature desires to be the smartest, prettiest, havethe most money. Many of the desires of the sinful nature are applauded in ourworld.
That’s why it can be hard to recognize when you do not have the mind ofthe Spirit. The world may be telling you that you are a good person, better thanthe average citizen of earth. You care about others. You volunteer at the foodkitchen; you pick up your own trash. That’s still not the mind of the Spirit.
I got up one morning after reading this passage and told the Spirit that I wantedto do exactly what He wanted me to do for that one day of my life. I determinedto get it right. (That desire was probably influenced more by my sinful naturethan I realized). I can’t even remember how far into my morning I got untilI totally forgot that I was following the Spirit that day!
When I got back in touch with the Spirit, I felt His encouragement to keep striving.He told me that I can’t have it on my own; that is why it is called theSpirit. It is supernatural, not natural. He corrected me that when I am seekingperfection in the Spirit, I’m yielding more to my natural desires thanmy spiritual desires. He comforted me in the truth that the mind set on whatthe Spirit desires is a gift of the Spirit to any soul who is truly open to Him.
It’s not all that easy. I need a lot of help if I am going to desire whatthe Spirit desires. When I see it happening in me, I recognize it as a gift fromGod and am grateful for his love that can even overcome my own natural pridethat gets in the way too often. I’m growing a lot just by recognizing howoften my desires are what my nature desires, not what the Spirit desires. I thinknoticing the difference is progress.