Colossians 3:2 “Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things.”
Danger is always a good incentive to take extra care. The recent spread of the COVID-19 virus has gotten people doing things and not doing things they hadn’t even thought about before. That is why Abigail and I recently entered the ranks of mask-wearing patrons.
Saturday morning Abigail and I watched a YouTube video to learn how to create our own perfect mask. We each chose a colorful bandana — I always knew these would come in handy one day — and folded it according to the simple directions. After sliding a rubber band for earpieces onto each side and folding a little more we were ready to suit up and go.
I must admit the two of us had some good laughs over our fancy headgear and even wondered if we’d actually have the nerve to go out in public wearing them. But the desire for safety finally out-ruled our fear of looking foolish. We drove to town, gathered our courage, and marched into the store on a mission. In only a few minutes I had mastered the art of keeping my eyes focused straight ahead and choosing the deserted aisles to get to where we wanted to go without being seen. Only once did Abigail and I make eye contact in the vitamin aisle and break into peals of laughter at our ridiculous new look. But fortunately nobody noticed because other than shaking shoulders we hid our mirth behind the mask. When it came time to checkout, the other “maskers” gave us the courage to act normal and do what needed to be done as quickly as possible.
I couldn’t help thinking about our recent measures for extra protection from germs and wonder why more people don’t take similar severe measures to protect their minds and hearts. The Apostle Paul reminded the Colossian believers that since they had died and been raised with Christ, they must set their mind on things above rather on earthly things. As Christians they and we have a new identity in Christ, so we must put to death everything that belongs to our old earthly nature.
We must not allow sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires, and greed to be part of our lives anymore. We must take great care to protect ourselves from all forms of anger, malice, slander, and filthy language by replacing them with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. This is not always easy to do in a world infected with the evil germs of sin.
This is why you must think of ways to protect yourself and take all precautions necessary to keep your heart and mind clean. You may not be able to wear a bandana mask, but you can protect your mind by only watching wholesome movies, and putting filters on your computer to ward off pornography and other harmful media. Develop a plan to keep yourself from getting into compromising situations with a boyfriend or girlfriend. Or if you are married choose to put up hedges to guard your heart. Work hard to be thankful so jealousy and greed don’t infect your contentment. Stop anger short by keeping forgiveness nearby. And always tell the truth so the consequences of lies won’t affect you.
Keep in mind that there may be times you feel foolish for making strong decisions. Peer pressure may push you to give in. But stay strong to your convictions. Set your mind resolutely on things above, and God will reward you with His perfect peace. Not only that, but because your life is hidden in Christ, you will spend eternity with Him in glory.
Danger from the COVID-19 virus is a good incentive to take extra precautions. You may even want to check out YouTube and create your own colorful mask. But don’t forget about your mind and heart. These are at risk every day of your life and need to be protected just as carefully as you protect your physical health.
So join Abigail, me, and all the other “maskers.” Develop a plan for safety. Put on your spiritual protection equipment and keep those germs away.
Sandra Sheridan is a midwest wife and mother of five. She shares her letters to her children with our readers. Visit her at www.VersesFromMama.com.