Monday, January 2, 2012

What Our Carnal Minds Love

This 2nd day of January at the Pennington household started & could be best summed up
 as a 'Norman Rockwell' kind of morning.
Pretty much my description of perfect.

1}  James is home {day off for holiday}
2} James cooked breakfast {biscuits 'n gravy, bacon & eggs}
3} The boys & I slept in & were delighted about #1 & #2

If you looked into our window this morning, you'd have seen us eating breakfast
at the table, well, everyone except Riley.
He wasn't hungry.
Who isn't hungry for biscuits 'n gravy?!
Who's kid is he, anyway?!

And after we had our breakfast & were still at the table, James led us in family worship,
as is our usual habit.
It impacted me SO much this morning that I knew I had to share!

Our devotion was from the Family Bible Study Series:  The Book of Proverbs,
{book 1} by Kevin Swanson.

{If you do not own any of his materials, go to his website & order some right now!!
He can be found at Generations With Vision.
Not only can you purchase materials, you can read his blog or listen to his daily radio program.}

Here's the portion that jumped out so much this morning:

"Thinking evil of others is just the sort of thing our carnal minds love to do.
We can easily assume the worst of people without due cause, presuming evil intent
in their motivations & arranging our offenses against them.
In our mind's eye, these people start to grow horns like demons, as our thoughts
create a false truth that would quickly disappear if we only spoke with them
in person for ten minutes!
We ought to be ashamed of ourselves when we discover that we have created the wrong
impression of people in our minds, seeing as they were all the while thinking good of us
& dwelling securely with us."

My, my ... isn't that the cold, hard truth?

I'd be safe in saying that anyone reading this blog can relate to this ...
more likely than not, found yourself in this same circumstance at least once in your life.

Unfortunately, we have too ... especially in these past few years.
We've found ourselves on the receiving end of many rumors, speculations, 
& accusations ... never one time having anyone inquire about the truth.

It's too much fun for our carnal minds to believe the worst about people ... 
the gossip {otherwise known as lies}.
Why take time to stop & talk to a person to potentially dispel the 'false truth' that's been
created in our carnal mind?
Why not look to the Word for how to conduct ourselves in a Christ-like manner?

The scripture reminds us to be imitators of God, as beloved children. 
And to walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering 
and sacrifice to God.
Ephesians 5: 1-2  

I like the way it's explained here:
Therefore be imitators of God (copy Him and follow His example)
as well-beloved children (imitate their father)
And walk in love, (esteeming and delighting in one another) as Christ loved us 
and gave Himself up for us, a slain offering and sacrifice to God  
(for you, so that it became) a sweet fragrance. 

We can't esteem & delight in one another if we are constantly assuming the worst of them. 

One of the most quoted scriptures in our home & at our church is this:
"By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."
John 13:35

Love is always ready to believe the best of every person. 
Believing the best of people speaks more about us than it does about the other person. 
It's an accurate way to gauge just how much love we really love one another.

We also have a mandate to treat others the way we ourselves would want to be 
treated {Matthew 7:12} ... & our model is the Lord Jesus Christ. 
He first loved us and gave Himself for us, so that we would love others and give 
ourselves to them.
When we do as we are commanded, our lives become a sweet fragrance to everyone
with whom we make contact. 
They may not be able to put their finger on why they like us, but they just do.

When we have love one for another, it will show.
It will show in our actions, our words, & our day to day life.
It will be evident to loved ones & friends, strangers & foes.

Ephesians 4:32 instructs us to be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one 
another, as God in Christ forgave you.
In Luke, we are reminded to love even our enemies, doing good & expecting nothing
in return.
2 Timothy tells us not to be quarrelsome, but kind to everyone.
And in Titus, one of my very favorite portions, says it this way: to be self-controlled, 
pure, & kind, that the word of God may not be reviled.

At the end of the day, I wanna be more like Jesus.
I want my heart to be pure before Him.
I want to be an example for other folks who are watching ... 
& yes, they are always watching.



  1. Love this... Lord, help me be more Christlike...

  2. Amen! We need to control our tongues and allow God to help us see others through His eyes. Thank you for this convicting post. P.S. I'm a new follower of your blog. Please feel free to visit me at

  3. We sure do! Thank you for following! I appreciate that. I'll be over to visit your blog =)