1. RESURRENDER – Renewal begins by offering up our whole body, soul, mind and spirit to the Lord. Luke 10:27 tells us, “And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind…” It takes a conscious effort to present oneself to the Lord by disciplining ourselves for godliness. Paul urges us to be present our bodies as a living sacrifice. Every day we are required to re-surrender, re-submit and realign our mind, will and emotions with the purposes of God. Set aside at least fifteen minutes every morning to worship, pray and read the Bible and to allow the Lord speak to you about how He is worthy of your re-surrendering yourself to Him every day.
2. REJOICE in the Lord always. Phil. 4:4, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!” Nehemiah 8:10, “Do not be grieved, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.” When we find our strength through the joy of the Lord He renews our desire to please Him in all respects. By delighting in the Lord He gives us the desires of our hearts. Regardless of our circumstances His joy is transcendent over all disappointments, difficulties and discouragements.
3. REMEMBER the good things you have and are becoming in Christ. People who have forgotten the benefits of being in Christ tend to slip back in to mediocrity and self-destructive tendencies.
Illustration: As Christians need to stop along life’s road and look back. Although it might have been winding and steep, we can see how God directed us by His faithfulness. F.E. Marsh described what the Christian can see when he looks back:
– The deliverance the Lord has wrought (Deut. 5:15).
– The way He has led (Deut. 8:2)
– The blessings He has bestowed (Deut. 32:7-12).
– The victories He has won (Deut. ll:2-7).
– The encouragements He has given (Josh. 23:14).
When we face difficulties, we sometimes forget God’s faithfulness. We see only the detours and the dangerous path. But look back and you will also see the joy of victory, the challenge of the climb, and the presence of your traveling Companion who has promised never to leave you nor forsake you.
4. Make the flesh dead to old desires and be filled with the Spirit’s power, perspective and guidance. Too many people allow the old desires to be fed instead of feeding from the Spirit’s supernatural forces. Calculate all the benefits you have in Christ’s forgiveness, hope, faith and love. Compare these benefits with the empty promises offered by fleshly desires.
“He is no fool to give what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”
5. RECONSIDER all of the negative conditioning that has led you in the past and realize you need to reprogram your thinking to what is excellent, good, honorable, right, true, and worthy of praise. Without an effort to reconsider how our faulty assumptions affect our decision making we will tend to operate under the same old destructive thought patterns.
6. REPLACE what is fleshly with what is God’s word. Paul wrote, “Put away anger, jealousy, wrath, slander and clamor and put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience, bearing with one another, forgiving each other just as God in Christ has forgiven you” (Eph. 4:22-32). Learn how to replace whatever is prompted by fleshly tendencies with Spirit controlled scriptural principles. Let God’s word dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another with songs and hymns and spiritual songs. “Singing and making melody in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do, do it all in the name and the authority of Jesus” (Col. 3:16-17).
We need to teach, preach and exhort people with God’s word as it brings life back to those who are seemingly dead. Even if people are not attractive they still need the revival that God’s word brings to their souls.
– Paul Fritz-
7. REALIZE God’s will for your life is what is best in all situations. Many people think that they can discover the best pathways to follow on their own. By praying about everything we are apt to follow Paul’s advice and “In everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known to God and the peace of God that passes all comprehension will guard your hearts and mind in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:6-7). People are not aware that God’s will is better than all human ways, our human perspectives and our human patterns of response. A full realization of God’s will is only made possible through prayerful petitions that allow the Spirit of God to work in and through us by His power. Prayerful people are better able to perceive what God wants to bring to life through and in their relationships, activities and ministries.
8. RECONCILE with those who are in conflict with you by addressing them as brothers or sisters. Paul writes, “I beseech you therefore, brethren.” Even though Paul was a great apostle, he humbly addresses mean, unkind and uncaring people as brethren. He expresses affection, concern and kindness to those who are least deserving of it. Bless those who persecute you and pray for those who try to do you harm. Be liberal in your love with expressions of thankfulness, warmth and support for their needs as far as it is possible.
9. RESIST the conformity to the world. Know that the greatest enemy to renewal is conformity to the patterns of the world with its lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes and boastful pride of life. If people provoke us we are not to lose our cool. We are not to be boastful, argumentative or rude when we are criticized. We are to not be divisive when we do not get our way. We are to not prematurely write people off because they do not measure up to our standards. The rule of the gospel is positive, not the politically correct mentality of going along to get along.
10. RECONSIDER the effects that renewal brings in leading us to the will of God. We will be given greater clarity, hope and fulfillment through the will of God which is good, acceptable and perfect. People who are in the will of God are healthier, more blessed and able to make the best out of the most adverse situations. They are maximizing their contributions for eternity. They will be promoted to positions of great responsibility not only in this life but also in the one to come. “He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much” Luke 6:10-12. We will gain a greater sense of God’s favor and of those who call upon the Lord from a pure heart. We will find ourselves living with greater love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control. We will not fall into patterns of depression, anger or fear that our needs will not be met. We are overcomers with good rather than victims of what is evil.
11. RECHARGE your batteries with His grace. Paul writes, “For by the grace given to me I say to everyone do not think of yourself more highly than you ought to think but think so as to have sound judgment as God has allotted to each of measure of faith” (Rom. 12:3). God infuses new energy, vitality and ideas in to our mind when we are renewed by His word, His Spirit and the fellowship of other believers. Do not think you can go very long on self-charging of your spiritual batteries. We need the recharging of God’s grace given through the edification, encouragement and enrichment of other members of Christ’s body and their spiritual gifts.
12. RETHINK the best ways that you match your spiritual gifts with others who can best complement your own. Sometimes we need to experiment before we can find the best fit with our spiritual gifts in fellowships, relationships and ministries where God can maximize our usefulness. Some jobs, people or ministries may fit you at one period in your life but there may be a need for a change. Ask the Lord to reassign you to places, people and ministries where you can have the best fit with your gifts and the spiritual gifts, perspectives and talents of others.