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Making New Grooves in Our Brain

Our sins seem to have three consequences for us. One: We’ve cost God His son’s life. Two: We wear unhealthy grooves into our physical brains. And Three: We will have to suffer the natural consequences of what we've done.

If I judge someone as worthless and treat them as such, I’m not only part of the reason why Christ had to die, but also fooled my brain into believing a lie. Perhaps I feel uneasy about this judgement the first time, but with repetition, this judgement will have a permanent effect on me. I’ll no longer be able to think otherwise because the right highways and byways of my brain have been cut off.

Lastly, I’ll probably miss-out on the depth that that supposedly-worthless person had to offer me because my own judgements blind me to seeing them accurately. I might even create an enemy of my neighbor, or, if that person is my co-worker, a rift in the company. These would be the natural consequences of my sin.

None of these consequences can be skipped or bypassed without an intervention from the Lord. When the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sin and we confess, we acknowledge that this sin is paid for by Christ’s blood. Confession also recognizes that this unhealthy way of thinking is part of the old brain, not the Spirit-filled new life. This repairs the unhealthy brain-groove, so to speak. Or, if thinking about this in terms of creating bridges within the brain, this prevents the unhealthy bridge from forming.

If I am someone who has made unhealthy judgements my entire life, an unhealthy brain-groove is already deeply cut into my mind. And the work to repair that groove may take a lifetime. Every time I’m given over to judgements, I will have to hear the Holy Spirit's conviction and confess.

Confession, however, does not excuse us from suffering the natural consequences of our actions. My judgements may cost me many relationships that I cannot get back. Nor can I expect those wounded by my judgements to love me again. They may wish to shun me, and they'd have every reason to do that. It’s not my prerogative to demand others to turn the other cheek. Only the Holy Spirit can repair the unhealthy brain-grooves that my judgements may have caused in other people.

I know this all sounds rather hopeless and daunting, but God is in the business of transforming minds. He is the one who pulled the mountains from out of the plains. He is the one who tears rifts into our oceans’ floors. He bursts lava from the earth’s heart. He stirs the winds in their patterns. He is fully capable of healing our brains, if we say yes to Him. 

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