Colossians 3:1-2 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.
Jim Elliot was a missionary to South America who was martyred in 1956 while attempting to contact an unreached people group there. Elliot died at 28 yet in his short years lived a life that demonstrated an unquenchable, unstoppable love for God. He is quoted to have said, "Wherever you are, be all there." His life and death certainly displayed that truth.
This morning I am reading 1 Corinthians 14:1-20. This passage makes it apparent that the church at Corinth was having an issue with individuals speaking in tongues without someone there to interpret what was being said. Paul encourages the church to use their God-given gifts but to use them in a way the edifies or builds up other people (Verse 17). What a beautiful admonishment.
Sandwiched in this section is a verse I've never even noticed before that provides help for me in a very real and practical way. Have you ever been praying and felt your mind slip away as you begin to compile a grocery or errand list? Have you ever sat in worship singing words to a song but actually having no cognition of what words you're singing?
Both of these have been a struggle for me. I have tried praying out loud, praying while on a walk with God and praying at various times throughout the day. Sometimes my focus is so that everything but God disappears. Other times no matter where I am, what method I use or what time of day it is, my mind wanders completely off topic. The same goes for worshipping God. There are times when I'm singing and the presence of God is so real that I'm certain my heart is fully engaged with His. At other times, I wrestle with my mind to keep it where I am.
"So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my mind; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my mind." (Verse 15) This verse makes it clear that if I truly want to connect with God, I need to yield both my mind and spirit to Him and allow them to work in unison to draw me closer to Him.
- My Mind - Set your minds on things above (Colossians 3:2). Like tuning the channel on my television, I need to direct my thoughts to Christ and then leave them there. Having my mind set on Jesus, means no channel surfing. He needs to be my one and only station during times of prayer and praise.
- My Heart - Set your hearts (spirits) on things above (Colossians 3:1). Setting my heart on Jesus means letting Him have His rightful first place. I once heard someone say, Jesus shouldn't be your first priority, He should be your priority. When I let God completely captivate my spirit, my heart will be set on Him.
Jesus, today I give you my heart and my spirit. When I pray, I will talk to You alone. When I worship, I will allow You to consume me. Wherever I am, especially if it's with You, I will be all there.