October 19

Psalms 73:24-26 (NIV) 24You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory. 25Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. 26My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

In this beautiful poem, Asaph asks God why it seems the wicked have all the fun and never seem to pay the price. When he went into God's sanctuary, he understood that in the end they will meet with justice. Asaph was troubled by how bad his attitude had been while envying the wicked. He said he was like a wild beast, only concerned about the physical.

Then he pondered the wonder of God loving someone with such impure and selfish motives. Why would God love someone so ignorant? Why does He stay with us and hold our hand? What a wonder that He would guide us with His counsel, and afterward receive us into glory! When we consider where we are coming from and where He is taking us, it is truly miraculous. Maybe, as the Apostle Paul implied, God picks the worst just to show how amazing His power is to transform us.

Who do we have in heaven but God? There are those that have gone before us, but God so outshines them in all that He is and in all He has done for us, that He stands alone as our greatest desire. How could we want anything greater? Every thing the earth could offer pales by comparison. Do you have such a vision of God? Has He captured all your heart's desires? Or are you still trying to find something on the earth that satisfies?

Our strength and health will fail. These bodies are designed for a designated period upon this earth, but there is more to life than these bodies. The Lord is the strength of our life. Every day the king's household was served their allotted portion for their service. It may have been something like a loaf of bread, a piece of meat, and two cups of wine. In this psalm, Asaph declared that the LORD is his portion, forever. What do we receive for serving the King? Christ Jesus today, Christ Jesus tomorrow, Christ Jesus forever!

Remember: Count on it; you'll never get tired of Him being your daily portion.

October 19

Colossians 3:1-3 (NIV) 1Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.

When we come to Christ as our Savior, we recognize the crucifixion of our sinful nature with Him on the cross. We also consider ourselves to have risen with Him to newness of life. Baptism is a picture of those experiences. Going under the water is our burial with Him in death. Coming up out of the water is the picture of being raised to new life in Him.

Since that should be true of everyone that is in Christ, we then must set our hearts on things above. This is an imperative command. It is not something that just happens naturally. It is an action that you must take. Of course, the Holy Spirit will direct and help you to do that. Without the indwelling presence of Christ, it would not be possible. We are to intentionally set our desires on heavenly things, on pleasing the Father, on heavenly rewards, and on eternal substance. Christ is there at the helm of the universe directing all things to be brought together under His rule.

We are also directed to set our minds there as opposed to earthly things. When we focus on the temporal, our perspective becomes distorted. Only by fixing our minds on the eternal will we have the right perspective and desires. This, too, takes an effort on our part, and is only possible through the power of the Spirit at work in us. For most of us, this transformation of our thinking will make more of a change in our lives than any other practical step. Before we came to Christ, we formed ruts in our thought patterns that were ungodly and destructive. We must recognize them for what they are and refuse to go down the old paths. We must consciously replace those thoughts of the temporal with that of the eternal. The more we set our thoughts there, the easier it becomes as we develop godly thought patterns.

Consider: If your life is in Christ Jesus, have you intentionally set your desires and thoughts on things above? What areas have you ignored? What will you commit to today so that you will set you heart and mind above?