I pondered all month on our Blog prompt for February, even wrote some things in my journal. But after reading this article last week...I feel lead to share this.
WHY SHOULD CHRISTIANS SET THEIR MIND ON THINGS ABOVE?
By: Norm Rasmussen
If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set you mind on things above, not things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. - Colossians 3:1-4
In no certain order, the demonic things of this world are going to one day be done away with. Worry, fear, anxiety, hate, rage, war, greed, lust, racism, injustice, poverty, sickness and disease … all these things are going to pass away. These things were never intended for the human race, but thanks to Satan, we are currently stuck with them.
What will replace these terrible things we have to put up with day in and day out? At the top of the list will be love, peace and joy. Those who belong to Christ will somehow be able to be in the presence of God as will be needed, and being in His presence will be a transmittal of love, peace and joy from Him that we can not begin to imagine at the present, though God wants us thinking on it. He wants us thinking about it more and more, because the cares of this life keep stacking higher and higher.
Politicians at best only have “band-aid” fixes for the mounting problems we have on this planet. They make empty promises that most adults realize they can’t possibly keep, even if they truly wanted to, simply because there are so many opposing obstacles keeping them from doing so. For the “sake of the political party,” way too many politicians are more concerned about their party coming to power and remaining in power than what is good for the citizens of their country … and that includes America, sadly.
Lust for power and money rules. Righteousness is a word you find a lot in the Bible, but a word rarely used when CEO’s of corporations plot strategies for succeeding in the market place. Special interest groups get their way through the courts, as long as they don’t carry a Bible under their arm! We have far too many judges and politicians coming to power that not only dislike born again Christians – they HATE them. Oh … they LOVE the born “once” Christians though. You know, the ones who either want to redefine what the Bible has to say about righteousness and unrighteousness, or really don’t care one way or the other, as long as it will get them votes, popularity, favor and/or money in their pockets.
God tells us this was going to happen before Christ’s return for His Bride:
But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: for men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanders, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, prideful, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. - 2 Timothy 3:1-5 (NKJV)
Saints – keep your lamp filled with surplus oil. (Read: Matthew Chapter 25 about the five wise virgins and the five foolish virgins who did not carry surplus oil). Prayer with occasional fasting is a crucial way of assuring you’ll have sufficient excess oil for your lamps. Feasting on God’s Word frequently is another. Spending more time in God’s presence … singing songs of worship and praise to Him … will relieve us of a lot of earthly burdens. Instead of finding every kind of reason to stay away from God’s people – cut out some unnecessary business and avail yourself to be used of God to be a blessing to others in the family of God. You never know when your time of need is going to come knocking loudly at your door. Form solid relationships now with sold-out believers in Christ.
Continue to exercise your faith … stretching it. As our physical muscles need plenty of exercise to stay strong, our spiritual muscles also need plenty of exercise to stay strong. Applying our faith in God’s promises in His Word is the best way I know how to continue to exercising our faith muscles. Afterall, God can execute a miracle any time He chooses on our behalf, no matter how turbulent and evil things get on this planet prior to Christ’s return. The difference between Him executing one or not usually comes down to how determined we are to believe Him for one.
Jesus is coming back for His Bride, and once that happens, Jesus will then eradicate evil from this planet. But that may be some time away yet. The evil we are presently faced with may be just the tip of the iceberg, compared to what it will be just prior to Christ’s return for His Bride (true born again Christians).
On the other hand, things can begin to accelerate rather quickly, and it may be only a few short years or even months or weeks before born twice Christians are with the Lord of Lords and the King of Kings, depending on when this is being read.
For born twice Christians, because of our precious identity in Christ, God tells us that because we are one day going to be with Him in glory in heavenly places … start NOW putting to death strongholds of sin in our life so we won’t have to be judged with the rest of the world once God starts pouring out His wrath, because it’s coming folks:
Therefore put to death your members which are on earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you also once walked when you lived in them. But now you must also put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.
Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.
But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. - Colossians 3:5-16
When we engage is these Godly endeavors … we are setting our mind on things above. These are heavenly things that hold eternal value.
Availing oneself to God in allowing Him to use us to help reach lost souls is also setting our minds on things above. Every time you sow a gift into Precious Testimonies (and of course, like ministries), you are helping God reach lost souls, as well as imparting hope and encouragement to God’s people.
Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. – 2 Cor. 4:16-18
Born again Saints – we are aliens and strangers on this planet. We’re just passing through – doing all we know to do by the leading of the Holy Spirit to help rescue as many lost souls as we can, while we’re still here on this planet. Yes – we are in this world, but God tells us that we not of this world. We are Ambassadors for Christ while we’re here on this planet, diligently engaged in doing whatever Kingdom work the Lord has called each of us to do.
We must stay focused on eternal heavenly matters. Focusing too much on earthly matters will work against us, and we will lose sight of what has eternal value, and what will eventually pass away. As we do, we are setting our mind on eternal things above.
Setting one’s mind on things above helps relieve anxiety, fear and stress. Setting one’s mind on earthly things only tends to bring hopelessness, frustration, anger and despair. Setting one’s mind on things above brings peace to the soul and spirit that is not obtainable by setting our mind on earthly things.
There is a kingdom that born again believers in Christ are going to inherit. It will be an everlasting kingdom. It will be a kingdom where evil is not allowed to enter. This glorious kingdom was in the mind of God before the foundation of the world. Are you anxious to inherit this kingdom?
“Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:” – Matthew 25:34
The closer we get to the return of Jesus Christ for His Bride, the more turbulent things are going to get here on this planet. There is no better time than NOW to start thinking on heavenly things above. Christ is coming back for those who are watching, waiting, preparing – who have made themselves ready for the arrival of the Bridegroom. Don’t get so caught up in the turbulent cares of this life that you fail to prepare yourself adequately for the return of our Lord of Lord and King of Kings. He can come at any moment. Are you ready? He tells us in the scriptures to be ready.
Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not allowed his house to broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not expect Him. – Matthew 24:42-44