Friday, February 07, 2014

Intentionally Focused, Day 15

This is what it looked like up here on Wednesday!  Graphic from Baptist Bible Hour
This morning I finished the third five-day week of the Intentionally Focused Bible study from Good Morning Girls, and must say I am continuing to find the study so encouraging and helpful.  I love the idea of getting back in focus at the beginning of a new year.

As I've mentioned, I'm doing this study very simply on my own, following their reading plan and using the SOAP method of meditating on the specified verses.  I do read the Intentionally Focused emails from Good Morning Girls, but usually not until after I've done my own study for that day.  I enjoy seeing what I can get out of the Scripture on my own first.

This week's study has focused on our minds.  Today's verse, which I am going to share with you, was Colossians 3:2.  The reading was verses one through three, but we were to SOAP verse 2.  Here goes:

S [Scripture]= "Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth."  (Colossians 3:2)

O [Observation]= As believers in Christ, we are living on this earth, traveling on a pilgrimage to our real home, which is heaven.  Positionally, it's as if we're already there (verse 1) and so, we need to find heavenly things of great importance.  We need to set our affection on things above, in heaven, and not on things on this earth -- although certainly God gives us many wonderful things while we are here.  A cross-reference to this verse is Matthew 6:19-21 --

"Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and thieves break through and steal,
"But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and thieves break through and steal,
"For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."

William MacDonald commented that "The Christian should not be earth-bound in his outlook.  He should view things not as they appear to the natural eye but in reference to their importance to God and eternity ... We are still on earth but we should be cultivating heavenly ways."

A [Application]= I'm a citizen of heaven, just passing through this world on my way to my real home.  God has given me much to do in my brief sojourn here, yet He doesn't want me to set much store by the things of earth.  He wants me to set my affection on things above, where Jesus is.  But He doesn't want me to be "so heavenly minded that I'm of no earthly good", as a preacher of old used to say.  Instead, He wants me to do my daily work as unto Him -- to be as of much earthly good as possible to others, because I'm heavenly-minded, seeking to view things in the light of eternity.

P [Prayer]= Lord, I thank you for the clarity of the instruction we find in Your Word.  I thank You that You so clearly teach and show us how we ought to think and live.  I pray that You would help me every day to conduct myself as a citizen of heaven.  Help me to view things from an eternal perspective and to set my affections on things above.  Help me to hold the things of earth very loosely, remembering that they aren't important at all in the light of eternity.  Help me to be a good testimony and an encouragement to others as I walk this earthly pilgrimage.  In Jesus' name, Amen.

Remember, if you are interested in doing this study on your own, it's not too late to start.  All you have to do is sign up for the emails from Good Morning Girls -- and there is a link to download the reading plan at the bottom of each email.  You can work at your own pace and I'm sure you would find the study a blessing.

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