When your identity is established in Christ, your unique design is uncovered, and your kingdom assignment is revealed. ￼But when your identity is rooted and grounded in brokenness from the past, your unique design remains covered and your kingdom assignment is hidden.
Many well-meaning Christians live their whole life in this place. Saved, and on their way to heaven, but still defined by who they used to be before they became a new creation in ￼Christ. ￼They spend their whole Christian life trying to do things for God, be a good Christian and ultimately pay him back for the free gift of grace. He is so generously given. ￼ Not realizing the whole time that they have been restored as sons in the Kingdom of their Father. ￼
But seeking an assignment - along with the resources, ideas and opportunities - to do something for God never produces lasting fruit.￼ it produces striving Christians trying to realize spirit birth results through their own works. ￼
The model of living that enables you to have lasting impact in the kingdom is to allow your assignment to flow out of your unique design, as you are rooted and grounded in the love of God as his child. ￼
No accomplishment for God, however earnest in your intent, will ever satisfy the longing for his presence only found in knowing your identity in Christ. ￼ No amount of expertise will ever replace the favor of God and his grace operating in your life to open doors and connect you through divine appointments in a supernatural way.
He is the well of life, which is now living in us through the power of the Holy Spirit. He desires to flow freely through us in the unique way he has designed us for the unique things He is created us to do withHim in His Kingdom.
The frustration many Christians experience in not being able to walk in the abundant life, is not due to God withholding, blessings, or favor from them, but in their misunderstanding of how the Kingdom of God is designed to work in the life of the believer.
The Kingdom is always on, always working, always available and always abundant for everything at all times. ￼Alignment begins with establishing your identity in Christ, so that you can see the world, God, and yourself the way He does. His perspective for His assignment in your life.
Mental flip-flopping creates spiritual instability. Thoughts and feelings come and go like the changing of the weather. However, if you allow yourself to be tossed - to and fro - by these, it creates an atmosphere of double-mindedness, which leads to instability.
As a gardener, I am reminded of how true this is. Once you plant something in a good place, you must leave it where it is. You have to water, fertilize and cultivate an atmosphere around it that is conducive to growth. If you keep digging the plant up and moving it to different locations based on the outward circumstances of the weather, it may hang on for a little bit, but eventually, it will die. Why? No roots are going to be established.
Renewing your mind is the same way. You have to decide what you believe about who God says you are, what you can do, and all he has for you in the kingdom. Once you do, you have to stay planted in that reality. This is not something God does to you but something God does with you. Over time, your roots will grow, and you will become established in the Lord. If you choose not to and allow yourself to be dug up every time the wind blows, no matter how much you love Jesus, it’s impossible for you to experience growth. ￼
Stay planted, my friend.
Ever felt something so strongly that you felt like it had to be true? But when you checked it out against God’s Word, you realized that - although you felt it deeply - it just wasn’t God’s best for your life?
It can be confusing, and frustrating and even cause us to feel anxious anger and a desire to rebel as we pursue our own path, our own “truth”.
If we’re honest, I think every believer has experienced this moment of decision in various situations. Some seemingly insignificant and sometimes in times that seem to define us as people.
Regardless of how these moments feel, know the enemy's strategy is always to get you to 1) doubt God, 2) minimize His Word, 3) rationalize based on popular worldview, and 4) trust your feelings and experiences more than anything else.
It’s the original bait: choose the tree of good and evil over the tree of life, your way, not God’s way, figuring out life for yourself vs. receiving life by faith from the Father.
But the challenge (and invitation) for every believer in Jesus is to choose to deny themselves, trust God, and align themselves with His Word versus what they feel, think, or believe.
Our thoughts, feelings, and opinions will always lead us to self-serving options, but the Holy Spirit draws us to the Father and enlivens God’s Word so we can be transformed in His presence. It emboldens us to shed the old identity of our sinful nature and put on Christ.
Our identity is not based on what we feel but on who God says we are. Anything else is unstable shifting sand.
When you choose to intentionally align, God’s grace is released to transform you from the inside out. You are enabled to choose life when the world says choose comfort, feelings and preferences. You will be conformed to the image of Christ and walk as the new creation He has already made you to be.
Jesus did not come to condemn the world because of sin nor ignore it in the name of relationship or what the world sees as acceptance, tolerance or love. He did not come as a good (or even great) man in history with a model for living that we should try to aspire to in our lives in the name of social justice. He is not one among many good people with messages of love, acceptance, and tolerance, but first among all, primary and singular. He stands apart. He did not come to make us feel better about who we think we are or endorse our ideas about what identity, life, and love should look like, no matter how deeply we feel them or how radically the world celebrates them. He is God, who came to earth as a man to walk among us, empathize with us, and love us. Save us from sin and restore us to life in Him.
Jesus came with the gift of salvation for all who would receive it: redemption, reconciliation, and restoration. That gift gives us freedom from death, hell, sin, and its separating power from God and each other. It brings us back to long walks in the cool of the day with our Father. It allows us to enjoy the blessings, benefits, and responsibilities of walking as sons and ambassadors in the Kingdom.
Receiving the gift of salvation requires a choice: to lay down your old way of thinking, living and loving, and putting on Christ. Jesus’ invitation to all is to leave the patterns of this world and be restored to true love that can only be found in Him. A love that cleanses, purifies and restores. A love, like the eye of a needle, which requires we leave all our baggage behind and choose too follow Him.
As the old hymn says, “I have decided to follow Jesus. No turning back, no turning back. Though none go with me still I will follow. No turning back, no turning back.” Don’t confuse Jesus’ unconditional acceptance of you with permission to live the way you want to in the name of what the world calls love. That way of thinking is a golden road of deception designed to keep you from all God has for you, not welcome you into it.
If the Jesus you are following doesn't require you to leave anything behind - especially things you've become really familiar with, comfortable, or reliant on - then that's not the real Jesus.
If the Jesus you follow never calls you to a deeper relationship with Him based on His Word and the leadership of the Holy Spirit, then that's not the real Jesus.
If the Jesus you are following only calls you to accept everyone and everything in the world as ok - regardless of whether or not it affirms God's original design as found in His Word - without rejecting the false narratives and identities of the world, then that's not the real Jesus.
If the Jesus you are following fawns over politicians and political ideologies, demanding allegiance to the Kingdoms of this world (parties, political agendas, nations, states, regions, continents) rather than the Kingdom of God, then that's not the real Jesus.
If the Jesus you follow tells you to celebrate yourself - your desires, feelings, and preferences - rather than celebrating a new, restored identity in Him, then that's not the real Jesus.
If the Jesus you follow encourages you to "live your best life" without inviting Him to fundamentally transform your life from the inside out through the power of the Holy Spirit, then that's not the real Jesus.
If the Jesus you follow is more concerned with equity, opportunity, and inclusion rather than transformed hearts living transformed lives, then that's not the real Jesus.
The real Jesus invites you into the wide, wonderful, abundant life in the Kingdom through the narrow gate of salvation. You cannot experience the abundance of the Kingdom without the laying down of your life, without exchanging your thoughts for His, your preferences for His, and your desires for His.
Fundamental to following Jesus is this radical idea that as I die to myself, I am raised in Him. In other words, as I allow myself to be crucified with Christ, I am made alive in Christ - both through the singular salvation experience and the daily choices I make. There is no life in Christ without daily dying to the flesh, no matter how strongly the flesh may try to convince you otherwise.
Christians realize that the only way to be fully fulfilled in this life is to lay down what we thought was life in order to receive the new gift of life offered through Christ. Otherwise, we add Jesus on to our list of preferences and ideologies rather than making a divine exchange.
The Trinity Effect™ states that transformation happens best, and is sustained the longest in the place where your identity, design, and assignment converge.
Someone can know who they are in Christ, go to church, and be committed to the Lord, in every way ￼but not embrace their unique design and assignment and live a lifetime of faithful frustration.
A person can embrace parts of their unique, God-given design, but outside of a life-giving relationship with Jesus, ￼ knowing who they are in Christ, and having an understanding of how to walk in their Kingdom assignment, will live a lifetime of disappointment.
An individual who pursues their God-given kingdom assignment outside of the Grace that comes with identity in Christ and their unique design will live a life of striving motivated by performance rather than their position as God’s child.
Personal fulfillment, lasting transformation, and meaningful impact happen easiest when your￼ assignment is pursued in the context of your unique design as your identity is established in Christ, not out of personal zeal for the Lord or a desire for impact alone.
Impact, wealth and influence pursued in an effort to do something for God rarely results in lasting fulfillment. Rather, it can just as easily lead you into striving like you did before you knew the Lord, just with a religious motivation.
Walk with God. Cultivate a strong identity in Christ. Respond to His leadership in faith. Embrace your unique design as you pursue what He calls you to. This is where the abundant life is found.
💡The Trinity Effect™ was developed my Matt Tommey as a methodology for helping believers experience the abundant life Jesus promised.
What does the "Renewing of the Mind" look like for Christians? That’s the question most Christians struggle with and have had very little teaching on during their life as believers. Consequently, they are left feeling unfulfilled, frustrated, and confused when it comes to actually living the abundant life Jesus promised in John 10:10 NLT where he said “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.” That rich and satisfying life manifests in the life of believers through one simple, life-changing strategy: the renewing of the mind.
What Does 'Renewing of the Mind' Mean in the Bible?
Simply stated, renewing your mind according to Romans 12:2 means interpreting life through the lens of God’s Word and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, rather than through the lens of your experience, woundedness, trauma, preferences, or the opinions of others. It’s a fundamental shift toward seeing the world, yourself, others, God, and especially what’s possible from a Kingdom perspective. It’s making a daily, moment by moment choice to choose the Mind of Christ which lives inside of us as new creations rather than operating from our soulish mind the way we did before we were saved.
Why Does the Bible Emphasize the 'Renewing of the Mind'?
Unless a Christian learns to renew their mind, they will continue to walk in defeat, struggle, and confusion, as they desire to experience a Spirit-led life yet, have no understanding of how or tools with which to see that life manifest. This is the predicament of most believers who live lives of religious obedience and obligation yet void of any real Spirit-led power. Without renewing your mind, the only two options are to wait, hope, and beg God to change you or to work, sweat, and strive on your own to achieve the results you so long to experience. Neither is God’s best.
Renewing your mind aligns your mind with the truth of God’s Word by learning to recognize the lies of the enemy, replace them with the truth of God’s Word and then reinforce that truth every time the enemy comes at them with those same lies. In 2 Corinthians 10:5 ESV, God’s Word teaches us that “We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ…” Taking a thought captive literally means to capture or conquer that thought as you identify it and compare it to God’s Word. Does this thought agree with God’s promises over my life or not? If not then I cast it away—rejecting its influence in my life – and I plant in its place one of God’s promises from His Word.
In 2 Peter 1:3-4, the Bible says “His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.Through these He has given us His precious and magnificent promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, now that you have escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” Did you get that? It’s through God’s precious promises that we participate in the divine nature.
Renewed thoughts resulting in new beliefs help you engage with God’s plan for your life because thoughts fuel your beliefs. Godly Kingdom-Focused thoughts are great fuel for your godly beliefs, while ungodly, fear-driven lies and half-truths fuel ungodly beliefs.
Renewing your mind is not just a spiritual process, but a physiological one as well. When you intentionally change the way you think to align with God’s Word, it literally creates new connections and pathways in your brain to make that process easier and more preferred over time. Through the process of neuroplasticity, your brain can literally be reconfigured to align with the truth of God’s Word and thus create the solutions, strategies, and opportunities that best align with God’s plan for your life. Remember, in Proverbs 23:7 KJV “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.” Your thoughts (which ultimately create your beliefs resulting in your actions) literally create the boundaries of your life. If you want to experience a different life—the abundant life Jesus promised—you must learn to intentionally renew your mind.
Renewing of the Mind: Ways to Renew Your Mind Today
Recognize: Intentionally “capture” each thought that comes into your mind and compare it to God’s Word and His promises for your life. Ask yourself “Does this thought that I’m having right now reflect what God’s Word says about this situation or does it reflect a lie that I know doesn’t represent God’s heart for me?”
Replace: If the thoughts you’re having don’t agree with God’s Word, then replace them with promises from God’s Word. It can literally be as simple as asking the Holy Spirit to bring to your remembrance a scripture that is opposite of the lie you may be faced with currently. You can also just do a quick internet search for scripture verses based on the lie you’re trying to replace. Remember, thoughts are like seeds and whatever you allow to be planted in the garden of your heart will bring forth a harvest in your life. Choose your seeds wisely.
Reinforce: Every time you are flooded with those same types of thoughts that don’t agree with God’s best for your life, simply reject and replace them with God’s Word. One way you can accelerate this process is to write down your newly created Biblical affirmations on note cards, laminate them and carry them with you for easy access. You can also post them in places that you see often like your office wall, your desk, your car, or even your bathroom mirror. This can feel tedious at first, but as you do so in the context of gratitude, faith, and expectancy God’s presence will infuse this process, making it become more and more natural.
Visualize: God created you with an incredible imagination to see, sense, feel and create new realities in your mind before they ever come into the physical realm. It’s one of the primary ways we co-labor with the Holy Spirit to release His Kingdom in and through our lives. As you are replacing and reinforcing new thoughts based on God’s Word, imagine in your mind’s eye what it would look like, feel like to experience life within this new reality. This further stimulates your brain and accelerates your own ability to come into agreement with God’s best for your life.
Affirm: Create affirmation statements based on God’s Word that, along with your visualization exercises, continue to reinforce the truth of God’s Word inside your heart. Over time, your subconscious mind will become convinced of the new truth you’re aligning your heart with, rather than the old way you’ve been living.
You can absolutely live the abundant life Jesus promised if you master the process of renewing your mind including recognizing the lies of the enemy, intentionally replacing them with the truth of God’s Word, and reinforcing that truth through visualization and affirmations. As you do, you’ll be amazed at the double doors of favor that seems to instantaneously appear in your life simply because you came into agreement with God’s design for your life, rather than trying to make it happen all on your own.
Looking for free resources to grow as a Christian artist spiritually, creatively and in business?
Here's 6 great places available now:
✅ The Thriving Christian Artist Podcast: https://www.matttommeymentoring.com/podcast.html
✅ Matt Tommey Mentoring Blog:
✅ YouVersion Bible App Devotionals from Matt Tommey: https://www.bible.com/search/plans?q=matt%20tommey
✅ Books by Matt Tommey
*✅ 3 Misconceptions about Thriving as an Artist:
*Only for those artists who are NOT in the Created to Thrive Artist Mentoring Program.
Has your art hobby grown large enough that you’re thinking about turning your passion into a business? In this article, I’ll share a few quick tips that will help you know when and how to get started on the road to business success as an artist. I know it will be a big help as you consider starting an art business.
Start with a Call to the Experts
While there’s plenty of sites that offer “free” legal advice out there on the internet for starting your own business, nothing beats professional, local advice if you want to get started on the right foot.
From navigating local, state, and national laws, picking the correct business structure, and exploring the liability and tax implications of owning a business, a good legal advisor and talented financial advisor can help you navigate the decisions you need to make and the steps you need to take as your hobby grows into a business.
Is Now the Right Time?
Once you have your team of experts assembled (attorney and CPA to start with), it’s time to take a look at the state of your art. Do a little cost-benefit analysis with your financial professional, and decide if your hobby has indeed grown into a business. A few of the questions to consider when you’re at a crossroad like this:
Are you regularly investing personal money into your art hobby?
Are you regularly selling your work or teaching art classes?
Is the money you’re making from your art becoming significant enough to replace a part, if not all, of your work income?
Are you making enough money to offset the expenses of having an official corporate structure in place?
As you work with your team of experts, you’ll answer these and many more questions in making this determination. But if you and the experts agree it’s time, then your next move will be to…
Pick Your Business Structure
One of the first things you and your team of advisers will consider is what type of structure you’ll be using to start your art business. Here in the United States, we use three basic types of business structure:
While I’m no legal expert (and this is not legal advice), here’s a basic overview of each type of business entity you and your team of experts will be considering for your needs.
Want to dive deeper and learn even more? Check out what my friends at LegalZoom have to say on this subject by clicking here.
Looking for more tips?
Listen to what I shared with Bonnie, one of my podcast listeners.
One Last Piece of Advice
Once you’ve determined this is the time to turn our hobby into a business, do it right and do it with integrity. Setting up a business is not the kind of thing you want to leave to chance. Don’t fall into the trap of doing business under the table just because it’s easy and may save you a few dollars.
Walking with integrity in business, setting up your business, taxes, and financial accounts correctly is like weaving a net for the blessing God wants to send your way. If you have huge holes in your net because you’re not thinking and working through the details or because you’re avoiding taxes, then you’re potentially setting yourself up for disappointment and failure.
If an art business is in your future, then begin by finding those experts who can help you determine the best time, the best structure, and the best way to set up a business that will be a blessing to both you and others.
Have you ever wondered about the balance between God's design for your life and your responsibility to actually walk that out? Well, I want to share what the Bible says about this balance and reveal the two things every believer must do if they're going to find it.
You know, I love talking about the Kingdom of God. It's so simple. It's so clearly laid out in Scripture. And yet, so many people, me included for many years, have no clue how the Kingdom works. But once you get an understanding of how the Kingdom of God works in your life. Wow, things really begin to change.
Ephesians 2:10 is one such scripture. It talks about the balance between the design of God on your life and your responsibility to walk it out. It says this, "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them."
You Are His Workmanship
Now the first Kingdom truth I want you to grab onto is this: You Are His Workmanship. The Greek word for "workmanship" is poema, which we get the word poem. With that in mind, I want to paraphrase and expand upon the first part of this verse…
"You are a skillfully crafted artistic narrative that expresses the beauty and the heart of God."
You are not here by some random chance or happenstance. You are explicitly designed as a work of art by the Lord for His Glory.
You Were Created for a Purpose
The second Kingdom Truth I want to highlight is this; You Were Created for a Purpose. "Created in Christ Jesus" is how Paul puts it, but what does that mean for us today? That means we are one in Christ Jesus, joint-heirs with Him, empowered by the Holy Spirit, and fully able to receive and walk in the fullness of the Kingdom of God. But for what end?
"For good works, which God prepared beforehand." God designed, crafted, and fully equipped you to express His nature and His Heart to humankind in a way that only you can do. You are the perfect person for this mission, should you choose to accept it, which brings me to the next truth.
You Just Have To Do It
"That we should walk in them," or as another version puts it, "for us to do." Maybe you can relate to this, but for many years, I thought that because God had a plan for my life, that He was just going to make it happen. I believed that my role in fulfilling God's call on my life was to wait on Him to do it. Guess what? That led to a lot of frustration because that's NOT how the Kingdom works.
Overt action is implied at the end of Ephesians 2:10. While it's true that God has a divine plan for your life, one that He's had in mind for you for a very long time, His plan was for you to do it with Him. If you don't walk out the thing God created you to do, then you're going to miss the fullness of God's design for your life.
This Might Be Your Roadblock
But Matt, if it's that simple, why is it so hard to simply "do" the thing God has called and created me to do? The biggest roadblock most people face when fulfilling God's call on their life is their mindset.
So many good, well-meaning, Jesus-loving people simply don't know who they are in Christ. Despite being fully saved, they allow their old natural way of thinking, their non-renewed mind, to dominate their life. Things like...