"So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer." (2 Corinthians 5:16)
Imagine taking a vacation on a luxury cruise ship. I'll go with you. What do you think we'd be thinking about, mostly? I think I'd be thinking about relaxing and figuring out how to make sure I did all the fun things on the boat before the trip was over. I would be nice to people, sure, but this trip would be for me and my friends.
Now I'll ruin the dream. Imagine, instead, we went back in time to walk around on the luxury cruise ship Titanic the night before it sank. Even if I knew the time machine was taking us home before the iceberg hit, my head would be in a wildly different place. I'd wonder about the fate of every person I saw. I'd want to warn them or help or something.
That's what Paul is kind of talking about in this verse. His awareness that this life is almost over for everyone — and that the next life is the one we're made for — changed the way he looked at people. He couldn't spend his life just serving himself any more. And He couldn't pretend that Jesus didn't matter. Faith in Jesus was the urgent need of every single person he met.
Think: How many people in our lives do we think of as merely background? How many do we really look as as people made by God to be with Him forever? How can that attitude change our response to those who treat us unkindly?
Pray: Ask God to help not to think of people from a worldly point of view but to look at everyone from His perspective.
Do: Jot down a rough estimate of how many living human beings you saw or e-mailed or texted or talked to yesterday? How many of them would you guess are "in Christ."