1 Chronicles 19-20; 1 Peter 1; Jonah 3; Luke 8
1 Peter 1:13 has my attention this morning, "Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ." Just how do I prepare my mind for action? What does that even mean. Way back in the day I learned this verse from a version that read "gird up your minds" and I am able to get a much better idea of how to prepare my mind for action. So what in the world does it mean to gird up my mind? Well the phrase "gird up your loins" is from the Greek word anadzonnumi. This word was used to describe Orientals who wore long robes. Before taking a long journey or before running in a race, they would gather up their loose robes and tuck them up under their belt. In so doing, their long robes would not get in the way of movement.
Peter is not telling us here to tuck up our garments, but to do so with our minds-to get those things out of the way that would hinder us in our walk with Christ. Are there any "loose ends" in our minds, our emotions that we need to deal with? Take care of them, get them out of the way-someone to forgive perhaps, or maybe a fear that needs dealing with-what is in my mind that would cause me stumble as I walk-as I run the race set before me?
How about any wrong thinking? A main reason I read my Bible everyday is to correct any wrong ideas I might have about what it means to live my life for Christ. I often find it also corrects how I think about myself-to see myself as God sees me has freed me from an awful lot of guilt and shame that I continued to bear. It continues to amaze me how easily I can talk myself into something, into believing something, that is neither right or good.
Peter is saying that the place to begin is with my mind-taking up those things that would hinder my walk and tuck them up out of the way. Not permitting those things that would hinder my walk with God in any way. Preparing my mind for action.
The next part of this verse is a lot easier to understand. Be sober-minded. An easy definition is, to be serious and sensible, but I like what R.C. Sproule Jr. says about it; "To be sober-minded is to treat truth seriously and to have a healthy doubt as to our own understanding of truth."
And the result of all of this preparing of our minds, of treating truth seriously? Hope! And it is interesting to note here that Peter makes this a command-set your hope. I like the NASB translation here: "fix your hope completely." Peter does not give us a choice about this- just do it. And what is our hope? The grace that will be brought to us through Jesus Christ. May I get better at preparing my mind.
Grace, Peace, and Mercy,