As God continues to grow me in my walk with Him, one of the biggest ways I see change is in my mindfulness of the Lord throughout the day. When I was younger, there were plenty of days when the only time I really considered the Bible or the Person of God was in my morning devotions. The concept of meditating on Scripture throughout the day was something my head knew about, but my heart did not grasp. I didn’t make a conscious effort to take pieces of what I had read in the morning and chew on them as the hours ticked by, and some days, I didn’t talk to God unless I had something to ask for.
But in recent years, God has worked to discipline my mind in this area and stirred within me motivation to take “every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5 b). When my thoughts are tuned to Him, I experience genuine joy within; a satisfaction and contentment that has the roots that, by the power of the Holy Spirit, can stay steady throughout the unexpected twists and turns of the day.
Colossians 3:1-3 says, “Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” I love these verses. I can “keep seeking the things above” (v. 1) by setting my mind on them (v. 2). With this overarching goal in mind, what are some practical steps we can take to train our hearts toward “seeking the things above”?
1. Pick a passage of Scripture to focus on and regurgitate throughout the day.
This is so simple, yet can have such an impact on my attitude. As I encounter various bumps and jolts in the day, my meditation on a specific verse is often helpful in keeping my inward and outward response Christ-honoring. It is harder to react in sin if I’ve just been considering Who God is or what Jesus did for me on the cross.
2. Make God’s Word readily accessible in your home, car, or workplace.
Psalm 119:30 says, “I have chosen the faithful way; I have placed Your ordinances before me.” I love to have Bible verses in places where I will easily see them. At times I’ve had printed verses taped to my nightstand so that my eyes fall on them when I awake, posted on my bathroom mirror, on the fridge, on a cupboard, or as my desktop wallpaper. Writing this convicts me; I just moved, and it’s time to re-post Scripture around our home!
3. Choose music that will turn your thinking toward Christ.
“Come Thou fount of every blessing, tune my heart to sing Thy praise.” Listening to theologically-rich lyrics “tunes my heart” to dwell on the things above. I personally love simple hymns, and even instrumental ones can be a great tool if I know the words and follow along in my head or in song. In recent years, I’ve drastically cut back on the secular music I play; there is little-to-no redeeming value in its content, and it can even pull me down, have a depressing effect, or feed my pride and selfishness. But solid worship music is an effective (and enjoyable) way to “kill two birds with one stone” by helping me to worship while I’m going about my day.
4. Listen to solid teaching.
There are so many great preachers and teachers whose sermons/lectures are available via podcast, radio, mp3 download, etc. I love having a list of podcasts ready; they can turn mindless tasks into profitable times of growth and learning. Side note to this: if your church makes its sermons available online, consider catching up on your pastor’s current series if you’ve missed one due to sickness or vacation.
We serve an amazing God. He can be served, enjoyed, worshiped, and glorified in the midst of our various responsibilities and schedules. He desires to share sweet communion with us. When we set our minds on the thing above, as Colossians 3 instructs us to, there is great blessing and joy to be found. How do you practice living this out in your own daily life?