FIX YOUR EYES ON JESUS

Hebrews 12:1-2  Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,  (2)  fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

In days of trial and tribulation, in times of worry or fear, a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ might be distracted.  When Peter took his eyes off Jesus and saw the troubled sea he began to sink.  He very quickly returned his focus to the only one who could save him!

In the spiritual realms of faith we may not have such a vivid realisation that we are “sinking”.  Am I sinking?  Am I covering up my failing spiritual focus on Jesus?  I could order underwater swimming gear from Amazon!  I could buy the latest “How to be a Real Christian” book from Eden Books.  Perhaps I am just putting on a happy face?  The poet Stevie Smith wrote:

I was much further out than you thought 
And not waving but drowning.

The apostle Paul wrote about some Christians:

Colossians 2:19  They have lost connection with the head, from whom the whole body, supported and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows as God causes it to grow.

Somehow we who claim to believe in and follow Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord can lose sight of Him and not realise it. We can get involved in all kinds of ideas and doctrines that can do no more than give an impression that we are afloat.

painting by Francesco Trevisani

 

 

There was a Christian song around a few decades ago:

I need Thee every hour
Most gracious Lord
No tender voice like Thine
Can peace afford
I need Thee, O I need Thee
Every hour I need Thee
O bless me now, my Saviour
I come to Thee

It is no shame to admit you are drowning.  Life is very challenging at the best of times.  Fears around us and doubts within, confusing ideas, solitude and personal distress can drag us down.  What is the answer to it all?  The simple answer is “Have faith in Jesus Christ!”  That is all Peter could do.  He was “out there” because he wanted to experience life with Jesus – even the storm. The storm was all around but Jesus was there – in the storm. The Bible account leaves us thinking, “Well, Peter was never in real danger!”  He was, and he knew it!  It is when we realise that we cannot save ourselves, even after we have become Christians, that we are able to realise the amazing grace and generosity of God.  God does not rescue us because we deserve it.  He puts out His Hand and grasps ours because He wants to.

There was a thief, dying on a Roman gallows.  Next to him was One dying in our place.  The thief cried out, “I am drowning, help me, remember me!”  Whatever he actually said, it was an appeal just the same as Peter’s cry for rescue.  Jesus gave the thief a word of assurance and comfort.  There was no condition, he was not able to live even a day for Jesus, yet he was able to die in faith that Jesus was able to completely save him.

Hebrews 7:25-26  Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.  (26)  Such a high priest truly meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens.

Jesus can meet every need.  Let us keep our focus on Him and find the grace we need every moment of every day.