Monday, October 13, 2008


What am I looking for today, and where is my focus? Over the past week, I've been thinking about the mystery of how God sometimes opens my eyes to hidden things, yet at other times I fail to see what is right in front of my face! There are days when I don't do what is right, and afterward wonder how I could have been so blind. The Bible describes two distinct types of individuals in the book of Isaiah. To one type of person God says:

I will lead the blind in a way that they do not know,
in paths that they have not known I will guide them.
I will turn the darkness before them into light,
the rough places into level ground.
These are the things I do,
and I do not forsake them.
- Isaiah 42:16, ESV

The other type of person (see Isaiah 44:9-20) is described this way:

They know not, nor do they discern,
for he has shut their eyes, so that they cannot see,
and their hearts, so that they cannot understand.
No one considers, nor is there knowledge or discernment
to say . . . "Is there not a lie in my right hand?"
from Isaiah 44:18-19, ESV

Of those two types, which person are you? Isaiah makes it obvious that the clarity of your thinking and spiritual vision depends not on the quality of your eyesight, but on the subject of your focus. What are you looking at today? Are you looking to things created (idols) or to the Creator? The apostle Paul reminds us that to keep our lives in focus, we need only to stay clear on this one thing:

. . . the mystery hidden for ages and generations
but now revealed . . . this mystery,
which is Christ in you,
the hope of glory.

I pray that the Lord will give you and me the power of perspective today. Let's consciously place ourselves into the first category of individuals, the ones who are led "in paths that they have not known," and for whom God will "turn the darkness before them into light." Let's actively acknowledge that in many ways we're blind and helpless, for only after acknowledging our need can we be led by God's powerful hand.

Let's ask ourselves, "Am I free to be led by God's hand today, or is there a 'lie in my right hand' that would prevent me from latching onto God's firm grip?" If we want our darkness to be turned into light, then we must carefully examine our thinking on a regular basis, and mentally let go of any false assumption or misplaced priorities I find there.

In Christ we can pray with confidence and authority: "Lord, I see that I am blind. Show me what I hold in my hand - what I hold dear - that would separate me from the leading of your Spirit today. Make me willing and able to let go of my 'idols' and take hold of your hand, that you may turn my darkness into light before me, and guide me on level ground." AMEN!

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