A New Mindset

Several folks across the Texas District recently began reading and discussing Greg Finke’s book, Joining Jesus on His Mission – How to Be an Everyday Missionary. At the end of chapter 1, Finke writes a short paragraph that caused me to pause and ponder: “Old mindset, old practices, old results. New mindset, new practices, new results.” As I reflected on this statement, I asked myself, is this true? And if so, what does it mean?
Is it true? Well as the old saying goes, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. And so it rings true that if we continue in the same old practices, we should expect the same old results. But what does it mean for the church today?
Well the obvious answer is we need to do things differently if we have any hope of being more effective at sharing the Gospel and reaching the lost, the left out and the next generation. But what struck me about Finke’s statement is that it points to a deeper truth as well: the importance of having a new mindset. If all we do is try new things without a new mindset, we will likely undermine the new practices which therefore will not lead to the results we might have hoped for. True change, if it is to lead to the kind of positive new results that God desires for us, must be born out of a new mindset.
And this is what Paul communicates in Romans 12:1-2: “Therefore, brothers and sisters, in view of the mercies of God, I urge you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God; this is your true worship. Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.” To repent means to change one’s mind (and heart) which leads to a change in action. Paul identifies that this requires presenting ourselves to God in a self-sacrificial way, willing to be transformed through repentance, by having our hearts and minds changed.
So the question we need to ask ourselves if we are to see new results in the church is are we willing to present ourselves to God ready to surrender everything (even that which we hold near and dear with our church)? Are we willing to have our hearts and minds changed? We need to pray, “It’s not mine Lord, it’s yours. I’m sorry for the ways I’ve made church about what I like and what I want. And I’m sorry for the ways that I’ve neglected our true mission to go and make disciples. Change our hearts and minds and lead us into a new way of being the church that will more fully honor and glorify you through our faithful and obedient action. Amen.”
Pastor Bryce Formwalt is the Director of Mission Growth for the LCMC Texas District. Residing in Georgetown, Pastor Bryce is available to coach congregations on mission. Feel free to contact him with any questions or comments: 512-942-7776 or bryce@lcmctexas.org.
© 2018 Bryce J. Formwalt, All Rights Reserved. Reprinted with permission.
March 2018

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