Have you ever thought about thinking like God thinks? My first inclination is to say that this is impossible. No one can get into the mind of the Almighty. The prophet Isaiah records God’s voice:
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, and your ways are not My ways” (Isa. 55:8).
David, the psalmist cried out: “God, how difficult Your thoughts are for me to comprehend; how vast their sum is! If I counted them, they would outnumber the grains of sand; when I wake up, I am still with You” (Ps. 139: 17-18).
And yet, Scripture is clear in telling us that it is in the realm of the mind, in our way of looking at our options and making our choices, that we need to be radically altered. We are emphatically told: “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” (Rom. 12:2). Then, to add to our dilemma, James teaches us to be suspect of and recognize our deceiving ways: “But each person is tempted when he is drawn away and enticed by his own evil desires” (James 1:14).
So now as things get tight around the throat of our minds and we feel like gasping with David, we are thrown a spiritual life vest with Paul’s letter to the faithful in Philippi: “Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus …” (Phil. 2:5), or as the King James puts it: “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus … .” So, “make” and “let” give us great hope.
We have the God-given right to make the mind-changing choice to think like God thinks. The great apostle to the Gentiles, Paul, asked a question and points us in the right direction: “For: ‘who has known the Lord’s mind, that he may instruct Him?’ But we have the mind of Christ” (1 Cor. 2: 16).
David tells us two things about God’s thoughts: First, they are difficult to understand and, secondly, they are numerous. So, again, what do you do with God’s thoughts?
First, depend fully on the Holy Spirit to bring you around to the ways of God. These ways are centered, as we can be, on the wisdom of God as revealed in Jesus Christ. “Now God has revealed them to us by the Spirit, for the Spirit searches everything, even the deep things of God” (1 Cor. 2: 10).
And, secondly, trust God completely because, yes, God’s thoughts are way more numerous then we can imagine. God’s thoughts are not our thoughts and His ways are not our ways. God knows us better then we know ourselves: “You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways” (Ps. 139: 3). (Woodrow (Woody) Fletcher is emeritus missionary, International Mission Board, and pastor, First Southern Baptist Church, Golden.)