What you and I choose to look at matters.
Where we fix our eyes determines so much of what takes place on the inside of us.
This is why 2 Corinthians 3:18 explains that when we behold the glory of the Lord, we ourselves are transformed into the same image we fix our eyes upon!
In other words, when I inwardly choose to make Jesus my one thing… when I choose to give Him all of my attention and focus, I inevitably become like the very One I’ve chosen to look upon.
Hebrews 12:1-2 confirms this fact by declaring that I am able to run well and not give sin an opportunity when my eyes are arrested by the One that has modeled what it means to run and finish well.
It’s Jesus that is the author and perfecter of faith.
If I want to live like Him, I must behold Him.
Lately, however, there has been an assault against where it is we place our eyes.
The enemy is and has been using the subtle art of distraction to entice us to give our attention to what ultimately doesn’t matter most.
He’d love nothing more than for us to stare at all that’s wrong with the world and those we disagree with right now.
He is seeking to divert the gaze of our natural eyes in order to affect what the eyes of our heart beholds.
Because what you stare at you become.
And that, dear reader, is my greatest concern.
I am troubled by the fact that all that we look at and slam as ‘wrong’ and ‘unjust’ is actually producing within our hearts the very things we oppose.
I’m concerned that all of the wrong that we are beholding and disagreeing with is producing wrong within us.
I’m worried that we can be right in our outward opinion and wrong in our motivations and heart posture.
And without realizing it, we can wind up being just as guilty as the people we mark as evil and corrupt.
So often we get caught up in pointing out and heralding the outward sins of others that we neglect the sins of our own hearts.
Things like jealousy, judgment, criticism, and hatred are just as vile to the Lord as what we would call ‘the big sins.’
One of the things the Lord keeps reminding me of in this season is this: If it’s not producing Christ within you, it’s a distraction.
He’s also been reminding me a lot about the prophetic experience I had in November 2020 when He had twice awakened me from sleep with a pressing message.
The first time I was awakened by the sound of my tv remote being slammed on my night stand. When I sat up straight in my bed alarmed by what it was that I heard, I heard an inward voice say to me, “Put away the distractions.”
I was awakened again six days later, but this time it was by what sounded like a hand slamming twice against my wall. Again I sat up, but this time I heard an inward voice say, “It’s urgent.”
And that’s how this time feels to me.
It’s urgent that we put away the distractions.
It’s urgent that we tend to our inner reality rather than getting consumed by what’s happening outwardly.
Heaven forbid that we wind up becoming inwardly what it is that we are consuming outwardly.
Jesus is the only one worthy of my attention and gaze.
He is the one I want to be like.
I want my tombstone to say, “He knew and walked with the Lord.”
I don’t want it to say, “He knew how to argue his opinion and point out all that was wrong in the world.”
Before ending, let me ask you a sincere question…
Is what you are getting caught up in something you see the early church getting caught up in?
When you read the book of Acts, was their goal to overthrow the tyranny of Rome or to preach and demonstrate the gospel?
Even when they asked whether it was finally time that God would restore the kingdom to Israel, which was a political question, Jesus responded by saying, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you… (see Acts 1:7-8).
Why is that not our greatest desire?
Unity will never be found in what’s become the focus of so many today.
Unity is only found in the mission and mandate of Jesus and our need to look and live more like Him.
It’s the Holy Spirit that makes such things a reality and that’s why He continues to remain to be our greatest need.
Let us be careful, please, with what we choose to give our attention to and what we make our focus.
- Brian Connolly, Faith Like Birds Ministries
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