What are YOU looking at?

No, I’m not trying to be confrontational. I’m just curious – what are you looking at? I know, I know, I’m not supposed to end a sentence with a preposition, but just ignore that for a moment. As we begin this brand new year, what are you looking at? Some people are looking back, with regrets, missed opportunities, mistakes made, failures. And with that look comes guilt, shame and a feeling of despair.  Others are looking back, seeing their accomplishments, achievements, fulfilled dreams. And with that look often comes pride, arrogance, and self satisfaction. So, I ask again, what are you looking at?
Paul tells us in Philippians that we should forget what lies behind and press on to what is ahead. (Phil.3:12-21) Pretty good advice, I might add. Of course, there is absolutely nothing wrong with looking back in order to evaluate where we are and where we’ve come from. That’s not what Paul is referring to at all. If you read the verses just prior to verse 12, you will discover that Paul says all his accomplishments as well as all his failures he has counted as worthless. They have no value except to learn from. For Paul, there is something much more important to focus on. Or should I say someone. His focus was on Jesus. And that is what our focus should be on as well.
 
In 2019, I want to encourage you to fix your eyes on Jesus. (Hebrews 12:2) Look at him for your salvation, for your forgiveness, for grace and mercy, for strength, for boldness and courage, for victory over sin and temptation, for everything in your life! And what’s the best way to fix our eyes on Jesus? Glad you asked. Read God’s Word, spend devoted time in prayer, worship God daily, study God’s Word, memorize it, apply it, live it.
 
Now I can’t guarantee that 2019 will be a year without problems. You know that’s not realistic. But I CAN guarantee it can be a year with great spiritual growth and victory. So the next time someone asks you, “What are you looking at?” Tell them you’re looking at Jesus!
 
Happy New Year!
Pastor Jim