Setting Your Mind

Colossians 3:1-4

“Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand.  Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth.  For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.  And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.”

Background:

  • We keep passing through time zones on our trek out west.  I’m writing this as we drive through Utah.  We’ve passed through eastern, central, mountain, and pacific zones so we often have had to reset the clock to the adjusted time.  As I read these verses in Colossians 3 about setting your mind, I think about setting a clock.  It’s an intentional adjustment.  So is letting heaven fill your thoughts. “It is to see to it that one’s interests are centered in Christ, that one’s attitudes, ambitions, and whole outlook on life are molded by Christ’s relation to the believer, and that one’s allegiance to him takes precedence over all earthly allegiances.” (Expositor’s Bible Commentary)
  • In going through the many time zones of life, I often need to reset my thinking from the temporal to the eternal.  We constantly need to stamp eternity in our eyes so that we can remember that only two things will last forever – the Word of God and the souls of people. I need to take care of my body, balance my checkbook, and take care of the earth God created, but ultimately we will all leave this place.  While we may spend 70 or 80 years here if things go well for us, we will spend eternity somewhere else.  This is why Christ said, “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal.” Matthew 6:19-20.
  • Paul just told us at the end of the previous chapter not be like the ascetics who hate the temporal (body, stuff, etc.) but also that we need to keep an eternal perspective as we live our daily lives here on earth. Then he tells us why.  We died to ourselves and our lives are now hidden with Christ.  He is our life and someday we will share His glory.
  • On particularly bad days, I’m encouraged by the thought of heaven.  On good days, the thought of heaven makes a good day even better.  God says thinking long-term is not a bad thing.

Application Questions:

  • Take a few moments right now to really think about heaven.  Seeing Jesus face to face. Reuniting with family members who have died. No tears, no sorrow, no death. (not to mention streets of gold….)  How does that encourage you today? (Lost items, physical ailments, financial stress, and broken appliances all kinda lose their sting in light of eternity…right?)
  • What are the best reminders to help you keep an eternal point of view?  (God’s Word, prayer, journaling, spending time with people who talk about heaven are all big ones for me.)
  • What do you think it means that your life is now hidden with Christ?

Prayer:

Adoration: Christ hides us in Him so that God sees us forgiven and cleansed by His blood.  Praise Him!

Confession: Admit some ways you focus too much on storing up treasure here on earth.

Thanksgiving: Overflow with thanksgiving about how awesome heaven will be – no sin nature to daily battle.

Supplication: Ask God to show you how you can let heaven fill your thoughts more frequently even through the daily grind.

 

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