How to Keep Your Eyes Focused on God

I put on my first pair of corrective lenses in the seventh grade. While I can’t remember if headaches or blurry chalkboards prompted my parents to take me to the optometrist, I do remember being thrilled that my exam resulted in a pair of glasses. For the last twenty-five years, my glasses are the first thing I reach for each morning. Otherwise, everything is fuzzy. Crisp vision motivates me.

The National Eye Institute says the most common type of vision problems are refractive errors. “Refractive errors occur when the shape of the eye prevents light from focusing directly on the retina” (NEI). This sounds a lot like our Christian walk. Distractions, sin, even good things like ministry can prevent The Light from reaching our heart.

 

How to Keep Your Eyes Focused on God

In a crazy, chaotic world, how do we keep our eyes focused on God?

In a crazy, chaotic world, how do we keep our eyes focused on God? #FridayFiveClick To Tweet

 

Nearsightedness: objects up close are clear, while far away objects appear blurry.

I am nearsighted. Without correction, I am only able to clearly see what is right in front of me. We often allow current struggles and strivings to hold our attention while neglecting to consider our eternal timeframe. Everything is temporary—from our bad days to our bank accounts. If we learn to maintain an eternal perspective, we learn to fix our eyes on God. “Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth” (Col 3:2 ESV).

 

Farsightedness: distant objects appear clearer than nearby objects.

The reverse is also true; it is possible to fix our eyes on the finish line and lose sight of the needs right in front of us. Many of Jesus’ parables touch on this. The Good Samaritan made a detour in order to minister to a need (Luke 10:35-37). The widow stopped in her tracks and swept her house to find a small coin (Luke 15:8-10). Big projects for Jesus are awesome, but drawing just one to Christ through personal contact is priceless.

 

Astigmatism: light isn’t focused evenly on the retina making objects appear fuzzy or stretched out.

Football-shaped eyeballs cause light to enter the eye unevenly. When we put more emphasis on the words of men than God, we get a distorted view of God. Humans are fallible. The people who make up the church will always disappoint. Your favorite author may undergo a theological shift that disturbs you. Someone in church leadership may offend you. Correct distortion by always starting in God’s Word. His Word is full of the Light—clear, and undistorted. (My friend Ginger Newingham wrote a great piece on this here.)

 

Presbyopia: as the eyes ages, it loses its ability to focus up close.

In presbyopia, the lens of the eye hardens and is unable to change shape to focus correctly. Age brings wisdom. It also brings jaded attitudes and the feeling that we’ve discovered all there is to know. We often allow past hurts and pride to set up in the heart like cement. Hard hearts can’t focus properly on God. Doctors correct presbyopia with a pair of reading glasses, and we correct our spiritual presbyopia with repentance. “Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy. Blessed is the one who fears the Lord always, but whoever hardens his heart will fall into calamity” (Prov 28:13-14 ESV).

 

discipline is the parents responsibility

Amblyopia: the vision in one eye is impaired because it doesn’t work with the brain.

Amblyopia is also known as “lazy eye.” It isn’t on the list of refraction errors, but this is why my son wears glasses, so I included it. Because his left eye is weaker than his right, my son’s brain would essentially forget about his left eye if he didn’t wear his glasses. If we stop reading the Bible, we will experience spiritual blindness. Let’s not get lazy, friends. Continue to sharpen your worldview through the lens of God’s Word.

 

We can keep our spiritual vision clear by undergoing regular exams. #FridayFiveClick To Tweet

We can keep our spiritual vision clear by undergoing regular exams. Take a look at all of these forms of visual impairment. Could one of these describe you? Take steps today to correct your vision. The clear view will be worth the effort.

 

#FridayFive Link Up

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#FridayFive Nov/Dec

With this election cycle, character is king (or the poop emoji). How can we build character in ourselves? In our children? Come back next week and share your thoughts. (#FridayFive will be open for two weeks starting in November.)

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Photo credit: Clem Onojughuo and Alex Harvey via Unsplash.

17 Comments

  1. so great! This post is filled with such truths. and look at sweet #babybear!!

    I’m bookmarking this one for later 🙂

  2. “… even good things like ministry can prevent The Light from reaching our heart.” This is so true, yet so hard to “see.”

    I love the way you present each problem and their solutions. The reminder at the end to keep your vision clear with regular examinations is powerful!

    This is one of my favorite topics! Thanks for sharing this!

  3. This rings so true, we often focus incorrectly in this world and we need to keep our eyes on what our Great Physician has for us each day, each season and moment of our lives. Wisdom here, thanks my friend!

  4. Good job tying the spiritual to the physical in each of these!
    I sure do want a clear vision of God. It takes daily effort to focus on Him. I’m so glad He is patient, that He keeps pursuing me, and that He WANTS to be known.

  5. Love this friend! So needed today. Asking for prayers for my family as we are going through a tough season. I am nearsighted right now and desperately need to remember that God is sovereign and His will is good.

  6. Wow, Kelly! You have so much truth here. We need regular examinations, God’s Word, repentance, and to steer clear of distraction. Well said!

  7. I love this post! Ironically I’m near sighted, but my struggle is definitely with being far sighted. I’m a huge goal setter, but that doesn’t mean I can miss the present! Thanks for the reminder!

  8. I love this perspective (no pun intended, ha)! Thank you for these wise insights! I’m definitely in a “far-sighted” phase right now… this was a helpful reminder!

  9. What a clear visual! (Se what I did there?) so true that our spiritual vision can be blurred just like our physical vision.

  10. Kelly, I’ve needed vision correction since I was a kid, and even more so these days with the frustrating onset of what I can now correctly call “presbyopia.” (I learned something new today, thanks to you!) I love your vision analogies, especially the one about “astigmatism.” Timely truth, right there! So glad to be your neighbor today at Crystal’s place.

  11. Kelly, I graduated to bifocals a couple of years ago and suffer from most of those distortions of my vision. I love how you paralleled our spiritual sight. Holding onto this: “Continue to sharpen your worldview through the lens of God’s Word.” Thank you for sharing your heart. xoxo

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