Where are Your Eyes?
I woke up this morning to a text from my friend Rachel. "Keep looking up, Meg!" she encouraged me.
Keep looking up. What does that mean?
It's our shorthand for talking about where the eyes of our hearts are. Are they fixed on Jesus, on the Cross (which puts everything back into perspective), on the glorious hope we have? Or are they focused on myself: my problems and victories and disappointments?
Do you remember the story of Peter walking on waves? The disciples are in a boat, and Jesus comes towards them, walking on the water. They're terrified, He tells them not to fear, that it's Him and not a ghost, and Peter responds with, "Lord, if it's you, tell me to come to you on the water."
Jesus says simply, "Come." And Peter does. He steps out of the boat. He looks at Jesus. He walks on water.
And then, he starts to sink. Why? He took his eyes off of Jesus, and started looking down at the waves (maybe marveling at himself for walking on them). But he sees how big they are, he starts to notice how strong the wind is, maybe he starts to be afraid of sinking. Jesus isn't even a part of his thought process anymore.
In the same way, when I focus so much on myself and my daily problems and struggles - I sink. I find that fixing my eyes on myself is a bit akin to a dog chasing its tail - I start circling around and around quite pointlessly, and soon I'm dizzy and I've fallen into a tailspin of worry and despair.
I've been going through a bit of a rough time lately. But that doesn't make any difference: my eyes need (for my own sanity!) to be on Jesus and the miracle of the Cross, not my circumstances. I don't need to remember this just in the little, daily, ordinary problems, but in the deeper valleys of life too.
I don't know whether Charlotte Bronte was talking about God in this quote at all, but she puts it rather nicely: "I try to avoid looking forward or backward, and try to keep looking upward."
Don't worry about the future - be that today, next week, or the next ten years. Don't fret about what's behind you. Look up!