Do you ever wonder how some phrases came about and how they become like daggers or darts, to be pulled out and used when offended or disgruntled about something?
Years ago, I went to an older friend of mine for counsel when I was accused of being, "So heavenly minded that I was no earthly good." I so appreciate his counsel still today. He said, "Beverly, if you are truly heavenly minded, you will be all earthly good." I think someone just didn't like something I said or had come under conviction about something I said and wanted to get back at me so they jabbed me with that phrase, because anyone who knows me, know that I'm all about helping others.
Now I don't know the origin of that phrase, but I am reminded of James Chapter 2:26 which says "...Faith without deeds is dead." In today's terms I would put it this way, faith and "having church" without living it practically, is worthless. James had written this letter to the church, for instruction, edification and correction.
We have a lot of church goers, but not enough Word doers. We have a lot of people who talk about faith, but don't walk in faith. We have a lot of people who know the Word of God, but don't live the Word of God. We have a lot of constant church goers who speak the Word, but don't apply it.
James said, "What good is it brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes or daily food. If one of you says to him, 'Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,' but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action is dead."
On the other hand, Paul instructs us in Col. 3:1-2, to set our hearts and minds on things above and not on earthly things. Can this be a passage that some may use to support so much heavenly mindedness that they ignore its practical application? If so, then they take the passage out of context and failed to read the rest of the passage. Read it for yourself. It talks all about how to apply that heavenly mindset right here on earth, ending on a note that says, "And whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving."
So then my friend was right. If you are truly heavenly minded, you will be earthly good. Be heavenly minded friends, but be willing to roll up your sleeves and get to work, not just inside the church walls as so many limit themselves to, but outside the walls of the church- on your job, in your home, in your community, even overseas. You preach the good news with how you live. Go and be of earthly good too.