Posted by: trbccoffeebreak | December 21, 2021


“Set your minds on the things that are above, not on the things that are on earth.” Colossians 3:2

Christmas is almost here, and most of us can safely say we are preoccupied with it. Some of us are preparing our homes for family and friends, ensuring every room is clean, organized, and ready for our guests. Others of us have been decorating with vigor, so that each space satisfactorily declares holiday spirit. And many people (me included) are furiously trying to meet deadlines and check off all work boxes, so when those precious days—and people—arrive, we can truly pause and enjoy.

There is so much to be preoccupied with during this season that it’s easy to get trapped in the various black holes, often with associated frustrations that create a simmering of negative emotions in this “joyful” time. I don’t know about you, but I’ve found that there’s an awful lot of crankiness and “me-firstness” out there right now.

But this season truly has One thing (well, Person) to be preoccupied with: Jesus Christ. He is the reason we celebrate Christmas in the first place. The gift-buying, giving, and receiving, the delicious treats, and the gathering of loved ones can all be wonderful…but they are still merely earthly things. We are to “set our minds on the things that are above”—maintaining an eternal perspective. What does this mean, exactly? Well, in an everyday sense, this exhorts Christians to walk according to God’s Word and submit to the Holy Spirit—to pursue holiness and be set apart from this world (1 Peter 1:15-16). It means to think differently as well, filling our minds with noble and virtuous thoughts (Philippians 4:8).

But keeping heaven-focused is especially necessary right now, when it’s so easy to get lost in the stuff of cultural Christmas. We are celebrating the first coming of Jesus—Immanuel, God with us! And whether they acknowledge it or not, much of the world is inadvertently confessing that God sent His Son to earth, taking on human flesh (fully God and fully Man) to bridge the chasm between us that sin created. (I absolutely love this aspect of Christmas—the gospel is being piped through sound systems in almost every store these days!)

And we must stay focused that the manger is not the end of the story. That precious Baby whom we sing about grew up to take on the penalty we owe, die an excruciating death we deserve, and rise again to forever vanquish death. By accepting this Truth, we are reconciled to God—made righteous in His sight, despite our sin and fallen nature. Because that Baby was born in Bethlehem, we can be born again and made new (John 3:1-8; 2 Corinthians 5:7; 1 Peter 1:23).

Finally, friend, we must stay preoccupied with things above because Jesus’ birth 2000 years ago was only His first coming—He is coming back. And all the things of this world that seem so important (or stressful, frustrating, and maddening) won’t matter at all. So, if you haven’t yet decided to surrender your life to Jesus, why not accept the Gift of His amazing grace this Christmas?

“Thank You, Father, for sending Jesus to reconcile us to You. I pray that people turn their hearts and minds to You this Christmas, changing them forever.”


For His Glory

Julianne Winkler Smith
TRBC Women’s Life

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