Friday, November 4, 2011

Colossians 3:1-2

"Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.

How real to you is that which is to come? God thought it necessary to reveal future things to us not for the purpose of satisfying our curiosity but that we might live in light of them.  No event is more inevitable than our own physical demise yet we often live as though the day will never come when we will be face to face with our Savior. The reality of our future with Jesus Christ is to permeate every aspect of our thinking as we approach each task that God places before us throughout our day.  The fruit bearing Christian has nothing to fear and much to anticipate when God transitions him from the temporal to the eternal.  The Christian in whom the Word of Christ richly dwells will share in the glory of Christ when He returns and for eternity (Col. 3:4). This was on the mind of the apostle Paul when he proclaimed: "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain (Philippians 1:21).  As the student studies in light of the future exam so must the Christian live in light of his eternal future.

Consider God's great servant Daniel's response to the misguided law that no man was to make petition to anyone but king Darius.  After the law had been made official, Daniel "entered his house (now in his roof chamber he had windows open toward Jerusalem); and he continued kneeling on his knees three times a day, praying and giving thanks before his God, as he had been doing previously (6:10).  Daniel's reality was not the death sentence that surely awaited him but his eternal future with God.  Had Daniel lacked an eternal perspective he would have surely given thought to his possession of the king's favor and his likely appointment over the entire kingdom (6:3). Had Daniel prayed discretely so as not to be seen, his position as second most powerful man in the most powerful kingdom in the world would have been secured. However, Daniel recognized that the glory of God was the issue and not his own earthly riches and fame. As Daniel emerged from the lion's den unscathed to the amazement of all he made it clear that it was God who had provided for his safety (6:22). How great was Daniel's testimony on earth and his reward in heaven as a result of his eternal perspective on his circumstances.

Priorities reflect perspective.  A perspective that is based on earthly things will result in earthly priorities whereas an eternal perspective will result in our seeking the things which are above.  Surely, there is nothing wrong with earthly success for Daniel would enjoy great success in Darius' kingdom (6:28).  However, such success must be gained in such a way that God be glorified not man.  Ensure that you are starting and ending your day with the study of God's Word.  Make certain that you are in constant communication with God through continuous prayer.  See to it that you approach every task with the goal to glorify God not yourself.  Consider every person who crosses your path as an opportunity to love as Christ loves you and remember that love is not the absence of hate but the desire and action in the best interest of another person.  Remove yourself from your thoughts as much as possible and instead set your thinking on that which is above that your perspective be eternal.  It is this eternal perspective that will enable you to draw nearer to God.

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