Posted by: mikenicholsblog | March 21, 2012

fix our eyes

As the car next to you drifts precariously close, you want to scream, “Get off your cell phone!” But you stop short, remembering you’ve been guilty of the same offense. Momentary distractions on the highway can create a lifetime of regret. But in truth, loss of focus in any endeavor will eventually take its toll. Navigating our journey road well also demands focus, and we find distractions at every turn. Keeping our eyes on the road when our ears are attached to a cell phone is tough, but keeping our spiritual eyes focused in the face of all our worldly distractions is exponentially more difficult. To where (or whom) do we “look” to find help?

Hebrews 12:2
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Fix our eyes on Jesus! Isn’t that what all Christians know to do? After all, it makes logical sense that if I just focus on Him, things will work out right. In years gone by, many wore bracelets that said WWJD (What Would Jesus Do), or read a book whose title bore that same acronym that taught you to ask WWJD in any situation. But easy solutions for my (and your) noise-filled life never quite seem to work. You may even love the song, “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus” as much as I do, but having a great feeling during worship as you sing that beloved hymn doesn’t automatically translate to real focus. It takes more than feelings, bracelets and books (and I do think the bracelets and books can help) to live a life focused on Jesus. Having said all that, I do firmly believe a Jesus-focused life  can exist, and is available for you and I.

Jesus traveled the road that the Father marked out for Him with a singular focus. His earthly journey was not free of difficultly and hardship, but He was never distracted from His divine purpose.  He spent every day fixed on the Father, and lived every minute with purpose and discipline. If we succeed in living out our God-designed purpose, it will only be accomplished by fixing our eyes on Jesus. Fleshing this out takes a willingness to surrender our wills to His. And that’s a day-by-day, minute-by-minute, thought-by-thought surrender! From my Knowing Jesus Study Bible, I found words that will help you and I understand how to fix our eyes on Jesus. “The word fix means to deliberately set aside time and to concentrate, in stillness and with determination and commitment. In order to fix our gaze on Jesus, we need a deep longing to know him,coupled with a genuine willingness to devote time to him alone.

Living with a gaze that is dominated by distractions, or with our eyes fixed on Jesus – it’s our choice. I am sure your desire is to seek Christ with better focus,  and we at Journey onWord want to help you. Starting in April, our devotional reading model will examine the life of Christ. Our intentional focus will give you a chance to look at scenes from His life as they are portrayed in each of the gospels. (More information to come next week)

May I encourage you to examine His life with us during April-June. If for one quarter you fix your eyes on Jesus, and study His life, it may change the way you deal with frustration, distractions and the hard journey turns that we all face. I trust that you will  find that the words of Helen Lemmel’s great song become more that just nice church feelings.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face;
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace.

What Would Jesus Do? There is no better way to find out than by looking at His life, and then applying what we see.

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