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May 16, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now 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 (NIV)
Have you ever moved to a new city or country, switched jobs or schools, or gotten married? Each of these milestones requires a shift in the way you think and view the world.
As an American moving to a new country, you have to begin thinking and living like a citizen of your new country. When you switch workplaces, you have to adjust to the style and philosophy of your new company. Once you get married, you must live as one who is bound to another. Similarly, but much more significantly and life-altering, when you give your life to Christ—when you’re raised WITH Christ, which means you’re now bound to Him forever in the same way that two become one in marriage—the way you think, act, and live must change.
In today’s passage, Paul instructs us to set our hearts “on things above, where Christ is.” The Greek word for set/seek—depending on your translation— is zéteó. It’s the same word used by Jesus in Matthew 6:33 (NIV) when He said, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” These two verses instruct us to pursue the heart of heaven and adjust the way we think to mirror the mind of Christ.
Being one with Christ means we must stop seeking after earthly things, after earthly wealth, and earthly accolades. We died to this life and world, so why would we continue to live like this world and pursue the things of this world? We must stop viewing others through worldly lenses and living according to worldly philosophies. We must cast aside ideas like “it’s my right as an American,” “look out for number one,” “follow your heart,” “God helps those who help themselves,” and “get rich or die trying.” We must stop living according to this world’s standards and economy and base our lives on the Word of life.
So, how do we do this? How do we seek first His kingdom and set our hearts on things above where Christ is seated? By seeking a deep, intimate relationship with Him! By allowing His Word and Spirit to transform us from the inside out. By fixing our eyes on Jesus and learning to live, think, act, and speak like Him. And here’s the beautiful thing: Because our lives are covered by Christ in God, we can be sure that all these things will be added unto us as Jesus said, because “he who began a good work in [us] will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6 NIV), the day when we appear with Him in glory!
DIG: How do you set your heart on things above?
DISCOVER: What are things above and what are earthly things? How can you tell the difference?
DO: Set a schedule to spend daily time with Christ in prayer, to study and meditate on the Word, and to devote at least one block of time per week for silence and solitude.
Danny Saavedra has served on the staff of Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.