A few months ago, I bought a Peloton and quickly discovered a few favorite instructors. One of them signs off from his classes with this encouragement, “How you practice is how you play, how you play is how you live, how you live is how you love.” This mantra has resonated deeply with me and where I am in my life. So, imagine my surprise when I read similar words in Jennie Allen’s Get Out of Your Head. She writes, “Our thoughts dictate our beliefs, which dictate our actions, which form our habits, which compose the sum of our lives. As we think, so we live.” It’s not exactly word for word, but it hits some of the same chords.
Our thoughts are powerful, and Satan knows this all too well. He knows that he’s winning the game if he can get you to believe his lies as your truth. So, what do we do? We practice, just like my Peloton instructor says. That’s how we learn to live better.
How we live says everything about us. If we’re not practicing things that make us more into the person God created us to be, how will the people we interact with know His importance to us? If we don’t make Him a priority, He won’t be reflected in the way we treat our neighbors, encourage our friends, or love our spouses.
How we practice may look different for you than it does for me. Maybe for you, it’s about memorizing Scripture so the truth it holds can permeate your mind. Or it’s about being courageous and telling a trusted friend where you are struggling. Or it’s about praying for the strength for the journey ahead. Whatever it is, our enemy is crafty, so our practice must be intentional.
Trust me, I know it sounds like a lot. But as I’ve grappled with how to live intentionally the last few months, here’s what I’ve discovered…God isn’t asking for perfect attempts. He’s simply asking you to do the reps and strengthen the muscles that build your faith. He’s asking you to trust Him to help you refocus your mind so His thoughts and truths can shape the way you live.
The tension isn’t going away today; learning to live with intention is a slow walk in one direction. But the good news is, you’ve been introduced to the struggle and can begin to process what it means for you. I’m excited to share the resources below because I believe they can help. You’ll find a simple prayer to help you posture your heart, a journal prompt to help you put thoughts to paper, and a few recommended resources to help you dig deeper.
Describe a time you were awestruck. What did it teach you about God and His character? Journal your thoughts.
Father God, You created me with unique and intricate details; nothing about me is by mistake. I pray today that You would bring to life a spirit of awe within me, for You and all You have created. I pray for eyes that will look up to see the beauty in a sunrise and in the smile on another’s face. I pray for ears to hear You as You draw my gaze towards opportunities to serve outside my comfort zone and the courage to stay until the task is complete. Thank You for loving me and leading me. Amen.
Authors John Mark Comer and Jefferson Bethke joined together for a podcast series about confronting the hustle and hurry our world invites us into each day. Over ten episodes, they shed light on how these mindsets are detrimental to our spiritual lives and what we can do to resist them.
Amid the mess and the mundane, how do you find space, open your heart to those who matter most, and receive the soulful way of living calling your name? In this journal, Shauna Niequist takes you on a guided journey to embracing peace in a chaotic world. With thought-provoking questions and short stories to reflect upon, this is a great resource to help train your mind to look outside the walls that technology and busyness try to trap us within.
Mentor Tip: These would make great gifts for your mentees as you conclude your mentoring season.
“I couldn’t help but wonder, God, are You here with me? Have You forgotten about us? Maybe you’re asking the same questions. In your marriage, family, work or health, you struggle to see evidence of God’s activity…you may wonder if He’s with you – and if He truly has your best interests in mind.”
In this article, Meredith Houston Carr writes about experiencing God’s creation on the heels of receiving a devastating health diagnosis concerning one of her children. Her article offers an excellent explanation of why looking outward and upward can help us in the difficult journeys.
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