Now, more than ever, you should set your mind on things above. It lowers anxiety and brings healing. Do you know how to do this effectively?
Life is full of trials, but it seems the pandemic has brought trials of an unseen magnitude.
Most of us haven’t experienced periods in our lives where experts are learning how to save lives at a realtime pace.
As a result, it’s a frightening and scary time. Couple that with the tumultuous economy, the job losses, the level of anger and hate, and the election, well, we’ve got some real tension in our world.
Many of us are feeling anxious.
Likewise, many of us are having more sad and down days.
Thankfully, God knows what we face. In fact, He gives us the advice to deal with our current difficult times in Scripture.
These verses in Colossians teach how to set your mind on things above instead of earthly matters.
- Be Aware
- Feed Your Mind with God’s Word
- Continuously Exam Your Thoughts
- Choose to Follow God’s Guidance
- Be Ready for the Enemy
- Trust You Can Turn to Him
- Remember He is All Powerful
- Let Go of Your Old Self
First, What Are ‘The Things Above’?
When I read Scripture with the intent to apply it in my life, I study it so I know precisely what the verse is instructing.
That is to say, what is the Scripture text telling me to do, say, or think?
Certainly, we can tell from the verse that ‘things above’ refer to things in heaven. But, it isn’t enough to only think of heaven as a whole.
This verse is instructing us to think of the things in heaven in reference to our lives and what Christ has done for each of us.
This verse directs to think of the blood of Christ that was shed for you, changing who you are.
8 Best Ways How to Set Your Mind on Things Above
1 Be Aware – You Must Choose Where to Set Your Mind
Your emotions, trials, and earthly circumstances can drive your thoughts.
But the Bible tells you should keep your focus on heavenly things. God’s request requires us to remain spiritually-minded to be obedient.
We must choose to let go of our earthly mindset and look towards heaven during all situations. Relying on our wisdom isn’t an easy thing to do.
However, awareness is the key to remembering we have this choice.
Our emotions can trick us into thinking we don’t have a choice. I think it’s much easier to keep our earthly mindset and run with the crowd. For instance, if everyone is complaining about something wrong, it’s simple to jump on the bandwagon.
But, if we can remain aware, we have an easier time making the right choice.
One way to become (and stay) aware of setting our minds on things above is to immerse ourselves in Scripture.
2 Feed Your Mind with God’s Word Daily
Without a daily input of Scripture, it’s easy to stay stuck in an earthly mindset. As humans, we believe we’re self-sufficient and capable of taking care of things.
But God teaches us ways to live opposite of unbelievers. God’s way is not the same as earthly ways.
We must fight our own selves and our culture to overcome keeping an earthly mindset.
Daily doses of Scripture can remind us of not only to be aware of our choice to be spiritually-minded, but encourage and arm us with truths to overcome our desires to stay connected to worldly thinking.
3 Examine Your Thoughts Continuously
Earthly knowledge and information enter our minds at almost all times, sometimes passively. But, you must take specific action to put the words of Scripture in your mind.
Capture your thoughts before they take you down a path of lies.
Pay attention to your thoughts and thought patterns. Does your mind jump to worse-case scenarios about people or situations?
Do you find yourself frequently thinking negative thoughts outside of what is real? Doesn’t that make you tired?
I call that wasted emotional energy. I work hard to avoid wasting my emotional energy on thoughts that are untrue and about things that will likely never happen.
2 Corinthians 10:5 reads, “We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.” (NLT).
Stay abreast of your thoughts at all times so you can capture lies and untruth and replace them with things that are pure and truthful.
4 Choose to Follow God’s Guidance to Set Your Mind on Things Above
You must follow God’s guidance in order to set your mind on heaven. If you hear the instructions God provides and choose to do things your own way, your mind is not set on things above.
God’s ways and His wisdom is bigger than you and the way you think. Trust Him and choose to listen to Him.
Seek God’s favor. Keep connected to heaven through your faith.
Hebrews 11:16 reads, “But they were looking for a better place, a heavenly homeland. That is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.” (NLT).
5. Be Ready for the Enemy
Of course, this is exactly what the enemy prefers – you to follow your own desires. So always pray that you will be ready when the enemy decides to tempt you to listen to your voice, thoughts, and desires instead of God’s.
Be ready for the enemy to tell you God has left you alone because you’ve sinned one too many times. Prepare yourself to hear the lies about God stopped loving you. The enemy is the father of lies and will stop at nothing to convince you to take your mind off of the things above.
Armor of God
Ephesians 6: 10-18 provides us with great wisdom and strong strategies to be ready for the enemy, “A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.
Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.” (NLT).
6. Trust You Can Turn to Him
God is always present and always with you. It’s not only comforting to remember this, but it’s also healing. You don’t have to wait for any signal or particular time to turn back to the Lord. You can turn to the Lord when you need Him, or as soon as you realize you’ve strayed off on a different path.
Things can get fuzzy when you’re on that different path, but you must always believe God is still with you and will never leave. you must not consider any lies that God abandons you.
7 Remember He is all powerful
God is an all-powerful and everliving God.
He has infinite wisdom and His plan is good. Prayerfully remember God is all-powerful so you understand and obey Him.
8. Let Go of Your Old Self
In Christ, your old self is dead. You must let go of your old self daily. Your thoughts and emotions should be on God, not yourself, as a source of good in your life.
As you move forward in your new life in Christ, look to Him for direction and wisdom on how to conduct your new life.
The Benefits of Setting Your Mind on Things Above
1 Set Your Mind on Things Above for Peace and Happiness
By looking at heaven we can be spiritually minded.
Romans 8:6 reads, “So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.” (NLT).
When we become alive in Christ, we become dead to our human selves. In essence, we renounce our earthly lives as our source of happiness. Instead, we seek peace and joy in the Lord.
Does this mean that we ignore the happy and fun things here on earth? No, but we have to understand how temporary they are. As we’ve seen during the pandemic and lockdowns, those sources of happiness and peace can quickly go away – for a short time or forever.
But, peace in happiness in Christ is eternal. And while everything else is changing daily, available to not-available, we can trust the Christ is consistent and is always unchanged.
2 For Less Anxiety – Remember Christ is Alive
During the chaos, it can seem you’re like you’re losing everything. But when you set your mind on things above, you see all you have actually gained life by losing yours.
Christ is alive and cares for you. When you set your mind on heavenly matters, it’s possible to feel His presence.
So, even though your world may be changing as you’ve never seen it, you can still feel His peace and calm, release fear, and worry less .
3 Learn Who You Are in Christ
When you identify with heavenly ways, you can guard your heart and put away your tendencies of your old life.
As you learn how to become more intimate with Christ, your thoughts and affections can more easily focus on Him.
Scripture and prayer illuminate ways to focus on pure things. Your new aim is to behave more like Christ and less like your earthly self.
Set Your Mind on Things Above for Your New Life
Nourish your mind through words from above.
As Christ moves more to the center point of your life, earthly things become seen with an alternative perspective. What we can see is temporary. Nothing here is eternal.
Your New Potential
It’s an honor and a privilege to serve the Lord Jesus. As you grow closer to you new potential in Christ, your aim becomes more about eternal things and less about earthly business.
In closing, as Christ-followers we can take comfort in knowing we have something special, heaven, waiting for us when we go to our final home.
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Until then, through some spiritual effort, we can be more comfortable during difficult times if we set our minds on things above.
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