If you are like me, this phrase immediately brings to mind a mental picture of an elementary school auditorium jam-packed with delighted parents, grandparents, and family members all snapping photos and waving at their second-grade children on stage as the children sing the remainder of the chorus, “… my two front teeth,” during an annual “Holiday Pageant.”
But, what about you? If I were to ask you to complete this sentence, what would immediately pop into your mind? In the quietness of your own heart, what would you say? What is it that you have been hoping for under the tree? What made it onto your “Santa Wish List” this year? What are you truly desiring this Christmas season?
Sadly, for many, it is material goods or worldly desires. The things pertaining to this life. Fleeting momentary pleasures. “Things that are on the earth” (Colossians 3.2b). However, if you are a true believer in the Lord Jesus Christ (please see profile for a complete explanation of this term), then you have been called to “set your mind on things that are above” (Colossians 3.2a). So, I would like to challenge you (& me!) to evaluate where you are “setting your mind” this Christmas season. Spend some intentional time in the presence of our great God and search your heart. Ask Him to reveal the things for which your heart is truly longing. Then, hold those things up to the light of His Word and evaluate them. Are these things drawing you closer to our great God or are they pulling your heart (i.e. thoughts, affections, worship, etc.) toward something else? Are you growing deeper in your knowledge and passion for our Savior as a result of these things or is your mind being filled with competing lusts? Are these desires honoring to God or dishonoring?
If you can honestly say that the things you are desiring this year are honoring to God, then praise and glorify Him for such blessings in your life. However, if in your evaluation, you are finding your conscience stricken, then please confess your idolatrous desires before Him as sin. Ask for His forgiveness and His grace to repent (1 John 1.9). Then, go about the business of replacing those sinful lusts with desires that bring glory and honor to His name (i.e. its biblical opposite). As Paul says, “Seek the things that are above” (Colossians 3.1a). Fill your mind with heavenly realities so that there is no room for worldliness in your heart this Christmas season. You will be blessed because God is a rewarder of those who seek Him!