“Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.”
We are strangers and pilgrims in a world that has lost touch with its Creator. Paul’s advice needs to be heeded by all who seek to live victoriously. Our hearts must be set on higher and loftier values. We are admonished to, “Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” Our minds, attention, and focus must be on things that are above – in Heaven – rather than things that are below. We are encouraged to be more heavenly-minded.
I have heard many times a warning about “being so heavenly-minded that we are no earthly good.” Personally, I do not think that is a very real danger for many. It is the focus on earthly things that often results in stunted spiritual growth and neglect of spiritual priorities. Earthly things would be things such as possessions, popularity, or position. The race to acquire more, the appeal of success, and the pressure to be accepted are all examples of the kinds of things that crowd the minds of many of God’s children. God clearly charges us to redirect our thoughts toward things above. Things that are above would include such things as our eternal home, our Heavenly Father, our eternal reward, the wisdom that comes from God, the peril of lost souls, laying up treasures in Heaven, prayer, the coming judgment, the principles of God’s inspired Word, the victory that is ours through Jesus Christ, and many more.
It is very natural to think mostly on earthly things. Human nature is drawn to the things of the earth. We are bombarded with messages of worldly wisdom and carnal values. The Spirit of God within us compels us to think in a more heavenly direction. We are taught in the Scripture to set our affection on things above. To set our thoughts on things above requires deliberate action on our part. We can control our thoughts. We determine where our attention and focus will be directed. The natural mind may drift toward earthly things, but we can choose to set our thoughts on heavenly things.
When we realize that our thoughts are engaged too much in the things of this earth, let’s remember the words of a familiar song: “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.” Like the men of old, we want to see Him Who is invisible and look for a city whose builder and maker is God.