Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. Colossians 3:2
The cockeyed squid lives in the ocean’s “twilight zone” where sunlight barely filters through the deep waters. The squid’s nickname is a reference to its two extremely different eyes: the left eye develops over time to become considerably larger than the right—almost twice as big. Scientists studying the mollusk have deduced that the squid uses its right eye, the smaller one, to look down into the darker depths. The larger, left eye, gazes upward, toward the sunlight.
The squid is an unlikely depiction of what it means to live in our present world and also in the future certainty we await as people who “have been raised with Christ” (Colossians 3:1). In Paul’s letter to the Colossians, he insists we ought to “set [our] minds on things above” because our lives are “hidden with Christ in God” (vv. 2–3).
As earth-dwellers awaiting our lives in heaven, we keep an eye trained on what’s happening around us in our present reality. But just as the squid’s left eye develops over time into one that’s larger and more sensitive to what’s happening overhead, we too can grow in our awareness of the ways God works in the spiritual realm. We may not have yet fully grasped what it means to be alive in Jesus, but as we look “up,” our eyes will begin to see it more and more.
How can you develop your “upward” vision? How can you set your mind on heavenly things?
Loving God, help me to set my mind and heart on those things that are of You!
Paul had meaningful ties with the Colossian assembly, although it was a church he hadn’t planted. One significant connection was the apostle’s longstanding friendship with Philemon—a leader in the Colossian church that met in his home (see Philemon 1:1–2). Throughout the brief letter of Philemon, Paul leverages his friendship with Philemon on behalf of his relationship with Onesimus, a Colossian believer and runaway slave from Philemon’s household (Colossians 4:9; Philemon 1:8–16). Perhaps these relationships allowed Paul to write to the Colossians with surprising familiarity, as we see in Colossians 2:2: “My goal is that [you] may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that [you] may . . . know the mystery of God, namely, Christ.”