Mediocrity. When you hear that word, what do you think about? When I think about mediocrity I think about not trying. I think about settling for less because it is easier. When I think about my relationships, especially my relationship with God, I don’t want to be mediocre.
Paul says, Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.Colossians 3:1-2
When you work hard, try your best, and do what you love with passion, it is never mediocre. It doesn’t matter what that thing is, if you are doing what you love with passion it is not mediocre. Do we do that with Jesus? Do we chase after Him with passion? In our church life, worship services can look like mere ritual or ceremony. They can lose their significance to us and become rote. When it comes to God, do we even know what passion looks like? Paul’s thoughts will help us here. Consider these encouragements from Colossians 3:1-2:
- Passion keeps seeking the things above. “Keep seeking” is a key component of passion. It doesn’t ever say, “I’ve had enough.” It always says, “I want more.” Do we still want more of Jesus?
- Passion zeroes in on its desire. Setting our mind on things above is that zeroing in process. Whenever someone is passionate about something (or someone) they get a little lost in it. Time becomes irrelevant. Spending time with that special someone means that we lose track of time. When was the last time you lost track of time thinking of the things of God?
- Passion lets go of lesser passions. Whenever we are caught up in something we pass on other opportunities. Why? We do that because our passion takes center stage. Paul says here to not [set our minds] on the things that are on the earth. That’s his pedestrian way of putting it. We are more familiar with the stronger, “crucify the flesh with its passions and desires.” (Galatians 5:24) Yet, its the same idea. A new passion has come into the Christian’s life. It is a passion for Christ and the things of Christ. When was the last time the things of Christ pushed out the things that tempt you to compromise or quit?
Is this easy? Of course not! Passion (both living in it and nurturing it) is only easy in the beginning. Sustaining it requires intentionality. It requires that we not just get caught up in excitement over Jesus, but also nurture these three qualities by continually seeking, zeroing in, and letting go of lesser passions.
Think about tag when you were a kid. Which strategy did you use? Did you tag the slower, easier runners or did you chase after the swifter, sometimes more obnoxious, runners? Which was more satisfying? We are all chasing something – even today. Which do you chase after, the easy to reach or the truly rewarding? Do you really find living in neutral satisfying? We could chase a relationship with God that is easy: soft comfort, a vague sense of purpose, ritual. The alternative is to chase a relationship with Jesus that is much more challenging but infinitely more rewarding: passion, holiness, and true communion. Which will we chase after together?
Something to think about,