Colossians 3:1-3 (MSG) reads likes this:
If you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up.
The apostle Paul is saying that if you’re serious about living a new life, it all starts by living in a new way. If you want more of your old life, you can keep living the old way. But if you want to live this new life in Christ— this life God has for you—then embrace new habits and a new approach to life.
So ask yourself, "Am I serious about living this new resurrected life?" If so, this is where it starts...
Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up...
It’s like a running coach saying to a potential track star, "If you’re serious about running a marathon, you’ve got to get off the couch! You have to start acting like a runner acts!“ For those in search of the new and better life that God has called us to, it’s clear that our coach is saying that you can’t live this new resurrection life with your head down, your eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. You just can’t do it! If you want to live up, you have to look up! You have to get your eyes up, your head up and your attention up!
Through years of pastoring and leading our church I’ve sometimes gotten so absorbed in my work that I found myself in ”head down" mode—”shuffling along”…absorbed with the things right in front of me. In those times I found myself more vulnerable to feelings of disappointment or discouragement. In those times I tended to think too much about the problems I was facing.
But I don’t think that only happens to preachers. This happens to people raising families, going to work, going to school, building a life, building a business. When we are looking down, eyes to the ground...
- We get absorbed with the things right in front of us. In other words, we get absorbed with things of lesser meaning.
- We lose sight of the big picture.
- We get self-absorbed in our problems.
- We don’t see things through God’s eyes.
- We worry too much.
- We stress too much.
But when we look up everything changes...
- Our perspective changes.
- We see farther.
- We see the big picture.
- We see the possibilities.
- We see the opportunities.
- We see the goodness and the bigness of God.
We define looking up as “living a life of worship.” The shift I’m hoping to help people make is to think of worship as something we do every day, throughout the day, all day. To incorporate a daily and constant habit of looking UP into our everyday life. We aren’t designed to operate on a weekly worship cycle but on a “moment by moment connection” of personal worship that becomes as much a part of our lives as the air we breathe.
The old hymn says it like this: ”Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in his wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of his Glory and Grace.”
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