Do you remember when you were learning how to drive or even ride a bike and at first it was so hard to keep going straight forward?
I remember gripping the steering wheel and gluing my eyes to the road. The second I moved my eyes to either side, the car would begin to veer that way. Wherever I was looking, that’s where the car would go.
Kind of like sports players. Wherever their hips are pointed, that’s where the ball will go.
So we find that the direction of our focus, of our eyes, of our posture, is where we will go. Straight down to the direction of our life.
It seems a simple fact, if we keep our eyes on God and keep running toward him, we will live a God-centered, fruitful life. Seems easy enough.
But then we get our hours cut at work and now our focus is on finances. Or a new girl enters your friend group and your energy is spent figuring out if she’s cooler than you. Or you realize all your friends seem to be in relationships and you become laser-focused on your feelings of loneliness.
In this busy, chaotic, messy life, there are so many things to fix our eyes on or align ourselves with. Before we even know it, God is barely in our periphery and we just sort of remember to bring him into things sometimes.
Have you ever been in this place? You remember at one point in the not-too-distant past being so focused on and in tune with God that you couldn’t imagine ever being torn from him. Then all of a sudden you realize you haven’t talked to him while stopped at a red light in at least a week.
And how did you get to this point? What changed in the in between? You certainly didn’t mean for this to happen.
And maybe you realize all the things that are occupying your mind right now and you realize where your eyes are. You realize your posture is not that of one knelt at the cross, but of one trying to juggle a load of things in your life.
And maybe you’re ready to get back to that point with God where you’re wrapped up in him, but how?
“Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.” (Proverbs 4:25-27)
This verse points out what we’ve been talking about. It’s easy to let your eyes stray from being focused on God. The consequences can be major, they can be loss of intimacy, they can be confusion and chaos.
But just as easily as one can take their eyes off of God, they can put them back on Him.
Okay, maybe not easily… Though the concept is simple, the work is hard. The word says, “be steadfast.” This requires consistency and discipline, something that is difficult for most of us.
But the reward is sweet. Intimacy with God comes from pointing our eyes and posture toward Him and running after Him. And truly, truly, if we run after God, things begin to happen as they should. Not that that mean it will be totally graceful or pain free.
But when we are running after God and He is our primary focus, the rest of the things we seem to worry about and stumble over become our periphery and we don’t dwell on them so much. When we point ourselves toward God, the things in our vision are the things he lays at our feet.
And to think, whatever your eyes focus on is where you will go. So just as you can take your eyes off God and veer away, you can put them right back on Him and start to turn back toward Him.
There will be countless more times in our lives we realize our eyes have become focused on something else. But how sweet to know that all He asks is for us to return our focus and to keep on the path again?
What has captured your focus lately and taken your path in a different direction? How can you acknowledge that thing this week and put it away? How can you return your gaze on God in order to run straight ahead?