GPS

August 19, 2021

Are you old enough to remember large, folded paper maps?

Most of them were accurate enough, but trying to use them while you were driving was a real feat. Having a front seat passenger who could serve as a navigator was almost a must. Although to get street-level detail, you needed a book.

I remember when I moved to North Carolina after my cancer surgery. I was selling encyclopedias (remember THOSE!!!) to families who had recently had new children. My job required me to drive as many as three hours to an appointment, and I needed to be able to find a specific street in places I'd never been. So, I let the book guide me; but getting lost was a regular part of the adventure.

Yesterday's drive from the Denver airport to my son's home in Wyoming required no such effort. I merely plugged his address into the GPS on my phone and got turn-by-turn directions from the screen in the car. A live moving map guided me every step of the way. If I wandered more than fifty feet off the route I received an immediate alert from the lady's voice. She was determined to keep me on track!!!

Today's verse is a sort of spiritual GPS. Think of it as God's Positioning System.

SET YOUR MIND ON THINGS ABOVE, NOT ON EARTHLY THINGS.

SET
The GPS on my phone needs to be given an end point if it will function to its greatest capacity. While it is capable of showing me where I am, that's not usually what I need. I'm seldom THAT lost !!!! The core value of the GPS is telling it where I want to go, letting it determine the best route and then providing specific and clear directions.

Setting your heart operates in much the same way. There's usually little value in letting it wander aimlessly about focusing upon whatever presents itself to your view. A deliberate focus on the "things above" allows the Holy Spirit to determine the best route to the end point He would have me focus upon. Making a determined choice to seek first His Kingdom and to focus upon His will is like setting a destination on your GPS. His voice will step in and offer correction if you begin to get too far off course.

YOUR MIND
It's YOUR mind, focus it well. Your mind is the first battle ground of the enemy. He'll try to get your attention with lustful thoughts and sights (or sites, too), fearful issues, despondency and doubt. If he can get you to focus upon these things, you run the risk of allowing your spiritual GPS to lose the signal. Keep your mind focused and you'll maintain a strong signal, one that is capable of guiding you. Your mind is controlled by your will. Focus it by determined and deliberate choices.

ON THINGS ABOVE
Christ is seated in a position of rulership in the heavenlies. There is a vast communion of the saints, godly people who've passed this way before us and served Christ well; and they watch like a great cloud of witnesses and pray for us as we face the battles of this life. Armies of angels, sent forth to minister to we who will inherit salvation; ready to do battle on our behalf. These are just some of the "things above" upon which we can set our minds.

Setting our minds properly keeps us focused properly.

NOT ON EARTHLY THINGS
These are the things of earth that the enemy will use to try and get us off course. It's a fact of life that a driver will naturally go where his attention is directed. Many an accident has been caused by a car running off the roadway because the driver looked to the side of the road way and got his attention diverted.

Years ago I spent some time working on an ambulance service. There have been plenty of times I was dispatched to respond to accidents where vehicles had left the roadway and struck the trees running alongside it. These are often bloody messes with significant injuries.

Now, as a minister of Christ's gospel, I have situations where I get dispatched to deal with the spiritual equivalent of distracted drivers who've wrecked their lives by striking headfirst into the "trees" along their route. Adultery, anger, addictions, hopelessness - the list could go on forever. Thankfully, so does the love and grace of Christ; which truly DOES go on forever.

SET YOUR MIND ON THINGS ABOVE, NOT ON EARTHLY THINGS.

It is a choice, a process of making a personal decision. We must continually decide as turn by turn in our lives present themselves to us. The road we are journeying upon is not straight. Navigating it requires our focused attention, skill and a good GPS to provide directions that will faithfully lead us to where we truly want to go. There will always be the possibility for obstacles to appear upon the roadway, so pay attention.

Trust the GPS of the Holy Spirit as you set your mind on things above. He will lead you. He's better than a live moving map!

+robert

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