Endurance for the Journey, Trust, Words of Endurance
Focus Not on What is Seen
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen.
2 CORINTHIANS 4:18
“Keep your eye on the ball.” That is one of the cardinal principles of baseball, whether you are batting or fielding. A variation says, “Look the ball into your glove.” The idea in both cases is that disaster strikes when you fail to maintain visual contact with the ball.
This is one time when a principle about baseball does not hold true in the spiritual realm. In fact, the complete opposite is true. In the arena of the spirit, if you maintain visual focus with visible realities and take your eyes off what is unseen, you are in trouble. Let me explain.
God tells us in His Word that if we insist on fixing our eyes on what is seen – on houses, cars, clothes, jewelry – we will never be able to “hit the ball” in the spiritual realm. We will continue to swing and miss until we are out of outs and the game is over.
When we are consumed by the material, it returns the favor and consumes us. That is why Ecclesiastes says things like “whoever loves money never has money enough” and “the abundance of a rich man permits him no sleep.” When our main focus is on the material we lose sight of the unseen – we lose sight of God – our eternal director.
I will always remember a personal story that a man told me about his home two weeks after the 1989 San Francisco earthquake. He said that fifteen years before the quake, he and his wife had bought their “dream home” in Santa Cruz – the epicenter of the earthquake.
They spent fifteen years of their lives putting all their time, money, and efforts into that home – their main focus in life. Many times, he chose to stay home on Sunday mornings and work on his house instead of going to church. His home had become his god.
But during the earthquake, in a short fifteen seconds – one second for every year he spent worshiping his “god” – his home was completely destroyed.
We cannot afford to fix our eyes on what is seen. It doesn’t last and it doesn’t satisfy. In fifteen seconds it can all be gone. Let’s look at what Jesus warned …
Then he said, “Beware! Guard against every kind of greed.
Life is not measured by how much you own.”
Then he told them a story:
“A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops.
He said to himself, ‘What should I do? I don’t have room for all my crops.’
Then he said, ‘I know! I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones.
Then I’ll have room enough to store all my wheat and other goods.
And I’ll sit back and say to myself,
“My friend, you have enough stored away for years to come.
Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry!”’
“But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get everything you worked for?’
“Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.”
Don’t be a fool, remember, to endure the journey of life we must keep our focus on the unseen – our God – and not on the seen – the material. That’s the way they do it in the real Major Leagues …
Focus on God, not the ball!
On the journey with you,