By Russell Vought
We live in a world of high tech electronics and one of the things that we see now as commonplace is the digital camera. To operate it one just looks through the viewfinder, aims the camera at the desired picture and pushes the button. Instantly the camera does all the work and a beautiful picture is recorded that can be sent electronically around the world. However, if you happen to get your finger over the lenses the picture will be ruined and of no value even though the camera is doing all it can to give you a perfect image.
Hebrews 12:2a tells us what to focus on to get the right picture for life. We are to look unto JESUS, the author and finisher (perfecter) of our faith. Hebrews 12:1 tells us to lay aside every weight and sin that easily ensnares us and run the race of LIFE with endurance. The focus is the responsibility of the user but the camera does ALL the work. So it is with the Christian experience. Our focus is our FAITH and that faith is only in the finished work of our Savior Jesus the Christ. Nevertheless, we can get our finger over the lenses and distort our concept of the real picture.
The Holy Spirit of God continually draws us away from thoughts of SELF to our beautiful Savior and Lord Jesus, but the world, the devil and our old carnal nature stand against these righteous thoughts and try to persuade and influence every believer to focus on SELF. The moment our focus is moved from Jesus to self the finger covers the lenses and the true image is distorted.
It is Christ in you the HOPE of glory. It is very important that we read and understand the Bible and do what it tells us to do. Prayer is very necessary in the life of a believer and being in an assembly of likeminded Christians is imperative. However, if we focus on these things and do them to a tee to be right before God we have distorted the picture. We have moved from Christ to self. These things are given to us to keep our focus (faith) on HIM. It is God who is at work in us both to WILL and to DO what He wants in our lives.
The devil will try to get us to focus on anything but Christ. He speaks in the first person in our minds. "My sins are too bad, I’ve sinned too many times, I haven’t repented enough, I don’t have enough faith" are all thoughts of SELF and the are the things that weigh us down and prevent us from living in the freedom Jesus has bought for us. Hebews 12:1 explains that the people listed in Hebrews 11 (cloud of witnesses) had focused on their only HOPE and God had not let them down even though they faced the fallen world that we live in.
The victorious life is in HIM and Him alone. We will never find peace, joy and contentment if we focus on anything good or bad but HIM.
Let His suffering, death, His intercession for you, His glory and HIS full payment for all sin be fresh every morning and brought to mind as we face the ups and downs of life. This is the perfect picture God wants us to see.