“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” Colossians 3:1-4
We desire to change. We do not want to remain in sin, and as believers, we desire to grow into the image of Christ. Like a seed planted in a garden of flowers, we look up at the tall tulip above and strive to be like it. If you are truly saved, it is right that you desire to put off sin and mature in righteousness.
But where does this change begin? We may think that change begins with killing bad habits—with behavior modifications. But the Bible never displays that as the solution for the born again believer. Rather, we are given passages like Colossians 3:1-4 which tell us something radically different: change begins with our hearts.
To grow into the image of Christ—to flourish as a believer—you must set your mind on your new identity in Christ. You must first set your eyes on things above—that is, recognize where your true citizenship lies. Though we walk, live, and breathe on Earth, we belong in Heaven, and our names are already engraved there by Christ’s atonement. Because of that, we should live differently. We should live as heavenly people. And this begins with where we set our minds.
If we only focus on the earthly, what we presently see before our eyes, our actions will reflect that. But if we lock our gaze above on the heavenly, on the things of God, our attitudes and desires and perspectives will change, and thus change our outward responses.
Where does true change begin? It is cultivated in hearts set on things above.
Dear God, please help me to set my gaze above. Help me to focus on what is good, noble, pure, and of You. Help me to keep an eternal perspective, rather than focusing on the present circumstances and what I see before me. Help me to strive to glorify You in all things, and to see everything as a gift from Your hand. Amen.
Take some time to study Philippians 4:8 and the characteristics of a mind set on things above.