May 6, 2012

Knowing where to put my mind makes it easier to know where to put my stuff!

Last week’s Sunday sermon was about spiritual disciplines that help us stay in places of grace. That is, we cannot make ourselves more like Jesus; that is God’s job, but if we read the Bible, pray, worship and so on, we are in a better position of cooperation with the transformation. 
The first point in the sermon focused on how to think. It came from the verse in today’s devotional reading, and has been on my mind all week.
Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. (Colossians 3:2)
The preacher talked about godly living being easier when we have a godly focus. If I think of what Christ has done for me, and who I am in Him, I am less likely to be interested in any appeals made by the world, the devil, and my sinful flesh. Living for Jesus Christ becomes more spontaneous when my heart has that heavenly focus.

This became very practical for me this week in another way. We are downsizing in preparation for a move to a smaller place. In doing that, I’ve been procrastinating over a few difficult decisions about what to keep and what to toss. Some of this involves sentiment and memories, and what do I do with all those “someday” projects that I may have time for, but then again, may not?

As I thought about priorities, this verse often popped up again and again. God kept reminding me that the stuff of life has value for eternity only if He uses it as part of His plan. That is, would He have us touch lives out on the slopes if we kept and used our ski equipment again? Does He have in mind a ministry involving my sewing machines? Will He need those extra coffee mugs as part of His plan for us?

Answering those questions became much easier with my mind set on things above. It put me in touch with Him so that I might hear that still small voice and feel those gentle nudges. With His help, tossing and giving away becomes much easier. So is deciding what to keep.

The Lord is showing me that If I have my mind in the past, or on my memories and sentiments, sorting is much more difficult. Also, if any of that stuff represents achievements or ego-stroking, thinking about heavenly rewards and the fact that none of this will go to eternity with me helps me make decisions. Instead of putting things off, I’m now excited about the task at hand.

Father, thank You that Your Word is true and practical for my spiritual life. A double thank You that it also serves me well in this particular task of downsizing. Instead of sweating over it, which is what I feared, You are making it easy, even joyful. Again, You are amazing!

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