James 1:21 Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.
This verse holds the secret to our spiritual growth. If you are born again and desire to mature in your faith then this is your verse. If you long to be what the Lord Jesus wants you to be then here you have it.
The first step is to lay apart, lay aside your old man with his ways. Get rid of the things that you know do not please God. You know now that some things simply do not bring you joy. They hurt your spirit. You feel strange doing them. Then lay these to one side. They do not represent who you are as a new creature.
Next approach the Scriptures with a humble spirit. Realize that God is speaking to you. He has a better way of thinking for you. This is not about what you but about who you are. This is not an exterior change but an interior change.
You approach the Bible and allow God through His Word to change the way you think. You begin a process of thought change. You, effectively, cut out the old thought patterns and replace them with new thought patterns.
You so study and meditate in the Scriptures that they become a part of you and your thought processes. You replace your old thoughts with His thoughts.
As you do this the Holy Spirit will take these new thoughts and use them to begin transforming you. You are already saved by grace but your practice doesnâ€™t always live up to your position.
You do not know how to think correctly but now you will. You will think as the Scriptures think. You will be renewing your mind. Romans 12:2
All of a sudden you will find yourself living out the new life that you have in Christ. It will not be a hard thing. It will be rather natural or spiritual because you have filled your heart with His Word and you will live out what is in your heart.
More important than ever trying to change your behavior is simply living in the Word and letting the Word live in you!