“Do not be conformed to the behavior and customs of the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may learn God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect” — Romans 12:2
Scientists now have a better understanding of the connections that are established in our brains between concepts. For example, in India most will have a strong association between “cow” and “sacred.” Such conceptual connections between neurons in the brain are created through experience. Moreover, these neural connections are strengthened by repeated association in experience. In other words, a practicing Hindu in India would be expected to have an even stronger association between “cow” and “sacred” than most people.
This feature of our brain’s architecture signals the vital importance of worship, Bible study, and service to Christians. Like exercise that strengthens the muscles, a weekly commitment to these three spiritual experiences will strengthen neural connections related to our faith in the Lord. While obviously oblivious to such brain research, the apostle Paul nevertheless understood the crucial role our minds play in our faith: “Do not be conformed to the behavior and customs of the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may learn God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect” (Romans 12:2).
The beginning of a new school year and church year is a special opportunity to commit or recommit ourselves as well as any family or friends to the renewing of our minds, to strengthening our spiritual neurons. At Salem Presbyterian we do that by worshiping the Lord each Sunday (in person or through our livestream on the church’s Facebook page), by fostering our faith in Him through educational/spiritual enrichment (e.g., Sunday School or a small group), and by serving others in His name through ministries of mission and outreach into the community and world. (You can learn more about opportunities to engage in these spiritual experiences in our September Tower Talk newsletter and in our weekly worship bulletins posted on this website.)
With God’s help, may we strengthen together our spiritual neurons and thus our faith in the Lord.
Grace and peace,