Why do we struggle with choosing what is right? Paul draws out this question in Romans 7:15, when he states "For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate."
Bad news, folks: Struggling to do what is right is a part of human nature. We are tempted to focus solely on ourselves, and choose what will bring us satisfaction.
Good news, folks: Living in a mindset of righteousness helps us fight those selfish and sinful temptations.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
Christ has given us His own goodness and righteousness as an example of how to live our lives, and when we develop the mindset laid out in Philippians 4:8, it becomes easier to focus on serving the Lord and others, rather than only living to serve ourselves.
So just what exactly are these true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and worthy of praise things? First, let's take a quick look at what Paul writes in regard to things which produce the opposite of righteousness:
Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming. In these you too once walked, when you were living in them. But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.
From this passage, we can determine that the things of righteousness to fix our thoughts on include: Sexual morality, purity, desiring goodness, giving of ourselves, peace, forgiveness, truthfulness, and wholesome talk.
If we truly want to walk in the righteousness of God, our mindsets need to shift. We must fix our desires on things from above, and put away things of the flesh. Christ came to set us free from sinfulness and is readily available to us.
Today, choose righteousness.
-Michael Schaffer (Content Lead @ Memes For Jesus)