Fight for Sight

semi-truck

One of the most significant challenges for my wife when she’s driving is having her vision blocked by semi-trucks. We recently were on a two-lane (i.e., one each direction) road that had lots of curves and hills, and semi-trucks. 

Since neither one of us could see around the bends or over the crest of the hills, it was nearly impossible to find opportunities to pass these slow-moving vehicles.

With the thought of our recent trip on my mind, I came across a magnificent comment by Christian author Jason Meyer. He said, “Discouragement keeps testing our vision. The battle against discouragement is really a fight for sight.”

God’s Vision

God’s Word is full of examples where a child of His struggles to see past the obstacles in their path so they can fulfill the vision God has placed in his or her heart.

Ponder the Scripture that God raises in you about your fight for sight. Is it the two spies, Joshua and Caleb, from Numbers, chapter thirteen, who brought back a good report and believed that God would help them succeed? Perhaps your thoughts went to the tax collector Zacchaeus, from Luke 19:1-4, that climbed a tree to see Jesus. My thoughts went to Luke 8:43-48 (NLT):

A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding, and she could find no cure. Coming up behind Jesus, she touched the fringe of his robe. Immediately, the bleeding stopped.
“Who touched me?” Jesus asked
Everyone denied it, and Peter said, “Master, this whole crowd is pressing up against you.”
But Jesus said, “Someone deliberately touched me, for I felt healing power go out from me.” 

I can see this poor woman in my mind’s eye. Weakened by the loss of blood, and with a crowd so large it pressed in on our Saviour from every side, no doubt she would catch a glimpse of Jesus and then lose sight of him.

Press On

How easy it would have been to give up her vision. In her heart, she knew that her healing would come if she could touch Jesus, even the hem of His garment. And she did! And she was! And this event has been remembered for two millennia for Christ Jesus’ compassion and her determination.

What vision has Jesus given you? Do you sometimes become despondent because that vision’s fulfillment is so hard to see? And God, sometimes you may struggle even to see God in the vision which He gave you. Take heart! The vision hasn’t vanished, for God completes what He starts.

Ask Jesus, right now, to move some obstacles out of the way so that you can catch sight of that vision; so that you can see Jesus in that vision. Just as the woman with the issue of blood, Jesus isn’t far from you. Press in. Receive His power.

Photo by Rodrigo Abreu on Unsplash

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Insurmountable Attacks

police dog practicing

Tumultuous voices come at us from every communication medium and social setting. At times it seems like our best option is to become a social and media recluse. But, of course, as Christians, that’s the exact opposite of our purpose in life. 

How do I stand a chance in a sea of people that would like nothing better than to see me fail? Well, you are in good company. The Bible is full of people that belonged to God and faced insurmountable attacks. It’s part of our job description.

If you want to commiserate with someone, choose Elijah. Read chapters 17-19 of 1 Kings. You’ll feel better.

Pick the Correct Battle

Behind all ungodly decisions are people. Jesus died for us while we were still in our sins (Romans 5:8), and He did the same for the people that are attacking you. We don’t know what God has planned for these people. They may receive Jesus on their deathbeds.

So what should we do? We learn in Ephesians 6:12 (ESV), “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

In the verse, above, “rulers” do not mean human rulers. This verse employs a poetical way for Paul to say “the prince of this world,” meaning Satan, as the Apostle John wrote in John 12:31.

So, what should you do? Pray – ask, ask, and ask again! Read the parable of the persistent widow in Luke 18:1-8. Seek the Holy Spirit’s guidance – where God guides, He provides. And write or go to people that you would never expect to give you a minute of their time (knock). Remember, you have the promise that Jesus spoke, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7 ESV) 

Back to Elijah

While you are in this spiritual battle, ask Father God for His strength. Jumping back to Elijah, the Scriptures state, “And the hand of the LORD was on Elijah; and he girded up his loins, and ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel. (1 Kings 18:46 ESV) 

Regarding the exceptional feat recorded in 1 Kings 18:46, Benson’s Commentary states, “God gave him more than natural strength, whereby he was enabled to outrun Ahab’s chariot for so many miles together.” I pray God will give you this same strength. Amen!

Photo on Visual Hunt

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https://www.rockexcavationservice.org/the-seriousness-of-the-allegation/

Yellow-bellied

yellow bellied prinium

Years ago, I drove past a church’s sign that had the quote, “Sometimes silence is golden, and other times it’s just plain yellow.” That memory came to mind this morning while reading Biblegateway.com’s “Verse of the Day.” The first thought I had when I remembered that quote was, “Why is yellow a code-word for cowardly?” This information was especially important because, as a kid, every week on “The Lone Ranger” I heard, “You no-good, yellow-bellied, horse thief!” 

“Yellow” was originally “yellow-bellied” and applied to birds that literally have a yellow belly, like the yellow-bellied sapsucker. From there, it came to mean an insult for cowards. If you’re afraid to ask someone on a date, you’re yellow-bellied. If you’re easily frightened or spooked, you’re yellow-bellied. This is often used as an insult or challenge, like “What are you, yellow-bellied?!” 

Vocabulary.com

There are times for us to be silent. I wrote a devotional titled, “All truths are not to be spoken to all persons at all times.” However, silence sometimes means a Christian is easily frightened. That doesn’t sound like a healthy Christian. The Holy Spirit lives within us, Paul wrote, by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, to put on our whole armor, and we have historical accounts, such as “Foxe’s Book of Martyrs” (epub free on Google Play), of mothers urging their children to look to Jesus while their children were burned at the stake for their commitment to Christ. No, “yellow” isn’t the color of a Christian.

What triggered my memory? “Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” (1 Corinthians 13: 6-7NIV) In our daily life, it’s easy to be drawn into worldly conversations or to be slightly duplicitous in conversations. 

We must not be afraid to shut down or walk away from worldly behavior. By doing so, we protect Christians that may be afraid to take a stand. Moreover, we can teach them by setting an example of a healthy Christian, one who hates evil, always hopes, always, perseveres.

Photo by SK Yeong on Unsplash

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