Where is Your Focus?

“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” —Colossians 3:2


We were introduced to transitive verbs—action words with an object—way back in elementary school. In this brief little gem from the apostle Paul, he utilizes the transitive verb “set.” Merriam-Webster defines “set”: “to put, place, position, fix or appoint.”

Your old grammar teacher would ask, “Set what?”

The verse instructs us “set your minds.” The King James Version says “set your affections.” I suppose we could debate whether setting your mind and setting your affections are synonymous, as one appears more cognitive and the other emotive on the surface.

But either way, the admonition is to focus. This is clear, because Paul gives us a contrast to clarify—focus on things above, NOT on earthly things.

Colossians 3:2 is short enough that it’s an easy verse to memorize. Go ahead and accept that as a challenge. But it will take discipline to apply it throughout your day, your week, and across the many roles you play at home, at work, and in your community.

You will have to be intentional in focusing on the concerns of another world more than the concerns of this one. For where we set our minds and where we set our hearts, there our rapt attention follows.

“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God” (3:1).

As you begin this week, where is your mind? Where is your heart? Are they focused on things above? Start with a clean slate. Pray.


My prayer for this week:

Heavenly Father, I am often preoccupied with thoughts of this world and consequently lose sight of your bigger picture. I don’t want to miss what is most important to you. Will you remind me of this verse often this week and give me the grace to put it into practice, setting my mind on things above? May the fruit of my renewed focus on things above become evident in my home, at work, and among family, friends, and neighbors…And to your glory! Amen.