Each of us has a go-to person, past or present, who seems to have just the right thing to say. When we listen to them, our lives seem to work better. Maybe it’s Dad or Mom, maybe it’s one of your children, maybe it’s a trusted friend or mentor. We call them as needed. Sometimes they jump in without being called. Regardless, we are blessed when we listen.
The church family at Colossae had never met Paul, but when they received a letter from the apostle of the Lord, they knew that he was writing to them from prison. Having lived most of his life (and almost certain of his earthly fate), Paul offered these words of wisdom to those good brothers and sisters. (The Spirit of God provided these words to us.) Our lives will be better when we apply these words from Colossians 3. And then, as we have opportunity to counsel other people, we can tell them our faith story.
“Since then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above … Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. … Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature.” Sometimes it’s easy to forget that we are raised with Christ. Today, at school and at work or in retirement, we have been raised with Christ. We have a blessing and an exhortation to look up, to set our hearts and our minds on things above. When we look up, it’s easier to identify the things in our earthly nature that must be put to death.
“Therefore, as God’s chosen people … bear with each other and forgive one another … Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts … and be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly …” And when we look up, we find like-minded people who need us, who need our forbearance and who need our forgiveness. Someday soon, we may also need their forgiveness. We need to look for the peace of Christ in our daily lives, and we need to listen to the message of Christ every day.
“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus …Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord.” The Bible is full of ‘all in’ language, such as “whatever you do” and “be thankful in all circumstances.” Each day, in everything we do, we dedicate ourselves to Christ.