Living Alive in Christ
I admit it…I’m a person who likes lists. I’m very task-oriented. There are pros and cons to being task-oriented: I can get a lot done but can also miss out on a relationship or connection with another person. AND, I can also miss out on connecting with God and the tasks He’s allotted for me to do—often doing ‘good’ things but probably not the ‘best’ things. I find that my motivation is too often to ‘complete the task well’ instead of seeing the big picture—what or who can I really take to heaven with me? I forget to “set [my] heart on things above,” as Paul admonishes us to do in Colossians 3 (and Philippians 4), to give thanks and do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.
In today’s article, I thought I would print out Colossians 3 for you to read and meditate on. It provides those lists and actions points I love so much BUT couches those points in what our real motivation should be—“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3:17). In other words, have the mind of Christ. Do those things that are of eternal value.
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is your[a] life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.[b] 7 You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8 But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11 Here there is no Gentile or Jew,circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.
12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Article Rerun from 9.2013