“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:1-3).
As the technologically challenged among us fumble with our computers and related products, we often create problems with the very devices meant to help us. Rather than following prescribed procedures, we simply press buttons, as though the more commands we send, the more likely we will secure the information we want. This is comparable to the lost driver who assumes the faster he drives the more likely he will discover the correct route . . . and woe to those who happen to be riding with him!
There comes a point when our electronic devices become so confused with our uninformed commands that they need to be reset. Resetting a device essentially clears away all the misinformed commands and allows it to start from scratch.
The apostle Paul tells the Colossian Christians to set both heart and mind on things above. By setting heart and mind on heavenly things, we are better able to avoid the destructive consequences of sin. Paul goes on to itemize the many sins leading to alienation from God, and hence, a miserable life.
At baptism we make an initial commitment to set both heart and mind on things above. But this setting is a continual process. After all, Paul is writing to Christians.
Coming to the Lord’s table is a time of “resetting” our hearts and minds on things above. We eat the bread, and remember Christ has made us part of his body, the church. We drink the cup, and remember our sins are forgiven through his blood. Yes, we still struggle with those “earthly things” that would draw us away from Christ. But in this moment of Communion, we once again set our hearts and minds on things above. And, having reset heart and mind, we begin a new week better equipped to live as “God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved” (Colossians 3:12).
C. Robert Wetzel is retired chancellor of Emmanuel Christian Seminary, Johnson City, Tennessee.