And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. 2 Corinthians 10
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. Isaiah 26:3
May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord my strength and my redeemer. Psalms 19:14
God desires truth in the inward parts. Psalms 51:6
This mind control requires persistence and patience. It requires coming again and again to the truth no matter how many times I have done so before, and quietly, gently, and humbly, choosing that same truth again, deciding this is what will be, this is the way I'm going to think, this is what I will act, and refusing to do otherwise. This is bringing captive every thought to the obedience of Christ.
Renew. Again and again. New every morning with that just-bubbling cup of espresso. New mid-morning as the day settles around my shoulders, New in the weariness of late afternoon traffic. And new as I stare into the starting-to-turn-to-coals fire just before I head off to the ice cubicle bedroom with flannel sheets.
And I am also staring at an as-yet-undefined length of time sabbatical. A Sabbath rest in perhaps the Delectable Mountains, to behold the gardens and orchards, the vineyards and fountains of water; where also they may drank, and wash themselves, and freely eat of the vineyards, a place of relief for pilgrims that are weary and faint in the way.
And I don't think it is a coincidence that Christian was led here after his escape from Giant Despair.
And somehow My Father put this idea into the heart and mind of my boss, and maybe I sputtered for a day or two or eight, but then it settled in true and I am so grateful for his willingness to follow the gentle prodding into the unknown.
And the folks who know me, all of whom are enthusiastic about the concept, are a bit quizzical about the day-to-day. Is God really going to be able to wrest the checklists out of the Checklist Lady’s fingers?
And this morning I woke up as usual just before the clock flipped to 4:15 a.m. but I didn’t have to hop out just yet into the day so I just lay there and thought about these verses that I had tucked into my heart yesterday. And I pretty much thought to myself that this is enough. I can live right here, practicing the presence of God for a whole chunk of undistracted time and Be. Be without the clickity clack clickity clack railroad track careening in the background of every conversation with the other or with myself.
I grew up a stone’s toss from the Norfolk Southern Railroad and every time it passed the pictures on the dining room wall trembled. And everyone tried not to notice, but we did. That’s pretty much how I have lived the past thirty-five years of my life and I get it that everyone who loves me would like the picture frames to stop rattling in the background.