Primary Concern, Primary Changes

changeWhen Jesus said to Martha, “There is really only one thing worth being concerned about” in Luke 10:41-42, He gave us a secret that’s simple, powerful and profound: to have “one thing”, one primary concern. This is the core value for every other value on your Life Palette so that you can live life as the masterpiece God created you to live. Get this one right and your chances of success in everything you do is multiplied beyond your wildest dreams. In the Bible Paul said, “Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.” (Ephesians 4:20) I love it! This is a verbal picture of what our lives look like when we live as a masterpiece.

God’s design for your life as a masterpiece begins with Jesus as the foundational core value on your Life Palette. Paul tells us, “Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand.” (Colossians 3:1) When we make the choice of receiving “new life in Christ”, He will lead us to all of the other core values necessary on our Life Palette, helping us to get them right for our lives to be a masterpiece—and ultimately for a future that’s “more than we might ask or think.” There are several primary changes that will take place on your Life Palette when you do this.

Primary Change 1:

You will begin to exchange your priorities for Jesus’ priorities. Paul tells you to “think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth.” (Colossians 3:2) In another scripture, Paul says to “fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” (Philippians 4:8) He is clarifying what life in Jesus looks like. Each of you will have different priorities in your life according to your personality, gifts, family, and daily responsibilities.

Primary Change 2

The second primary change to occur when you make the Kingdom of God your primary concern is that you get His perspective. “For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3:3) When you die to self, you get a new perspective about all of life. Maybe you’ve heard stories of someone who had a near-death experience and they talk about how they see life now from a different perspective. When you choose to follow Mary’s example and get your core value of your Life Palette to line up with what Jesus said, you will die to this life.

I can’t image anyone who understood this concept better than Lazarus, Christ’s dear friend and brother of Mary and Martha. His story is found in John 11. According to the witnesses in the New Testament, Lazarus died—and by the time Jesus arrived on the scene, the sisters had given him a funeral and he’d been in his grave for four days. It had been enough time that when Jesus told them to remove the stone that was sealing the entrance to Lazarus’ grave, Martha protested, “Lord the smell will be terrible.” Then Jesus brought him back to life! Apparently, God was not done with His masterpiece named Lazarus.

Imagine how Lazarus looked at life differently after four days of death. He surely understood what it was like to have died to this life and be hidden in Christ. Everything in his world would have been different. He was seeing things through a perspective that only a dead man could see. That’s the place of true masterpiece living potential!

Primary Change 3

Third, making the Kingdom of God your primary concern will cause you to have a change in your attitude. I’m talking about how your overall attitude of life becomes like Jesus’ attitude. Paul said at the beginning of Colossians 3:4: “And when Christ, who is your life…” Notice he didn’t say when Christ gets a special compartment of your life. This line screams the primary core value of your Life Palette; “And when Christ, who is your life . . .” The primary attitude of your life changes as dramatically as a man who was dead for four days and was suddenly brought back to life! He was as you should be—a dead man walking; “for you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.”

Next Steps:

Which of the 3 primary changes do you need to focus on today?

Adapted from Life Palette book: “God made a masterpiece…and it’s you!”