Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. ~ Colossians 3:2
You’ve probably heard the phrase, “He’s too heavenly minded to be any earthly good.” It’s usually directed at someone we might call “super-spiritual,” because they place so much emphasis upon spiritual things, or heaven, that they neglect, or do not take a practical approach, to the affairs of this life.
The apostle Paul is suggesting no such thing. With Paul, his concern is renewing the minds of his readers to the new position they hold in Jesus Christ by means of salvation. In this instance, we are setting our minds on things above because we are now identified with the King of Kings upon His throne:
If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. ~ Colossians 3:1
Because you have died to sin, been made alive in Christ, and are now seated with Him in the heavenly places (Eph. 2:6), you are not to divorce yourself from the world of practical life but you are to enforce the implications of your new position upon yourself:
Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry… ~ Colossians 3:5
We do this because we “have put off the old man with his deeds” (v. 9), and “have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him” (v. 10). These are all positional truths that we have received in Jesus Christ, but working them out in our lives is our responsibility alone.
Doing it may seem tough because it’s a complete revolution of your life, but that’s why Paul begins with where you are setting your mind. Wherever your mind goes is usually where your emotions, will, and body will go. And because you’re now seated with Christ at the right hand of the Father, this is to occupy your mind so that you can begin to impose it upon your old way of thinking and living.
Take some time this week to read Ephesians and Colossians and really try to absorb the glorious truths about who you are now in Jesus Christ. Then, try to think of ways you can begin to live that out in each area of your life.