Keep your eyes on him
Today I am going in for my annual “woman” check with Dr. Smith, my amazing OB/GYN. My oncologist, Dr. Oh, wanted me to have an ultrasound at my visit today to look and make sure there were no new cysts. As I have been preparing for today, I see how much the Lord has grown my faith. I am not a worried hot mess this morning. I can feel the enemy trying to creep in and plant seeds of doubt or play on any fears I may have. I have been praying against that and have asked family and friends to join in that effort. As it says in Ephesians 6:13-18 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. God has given us tools to fight against the enemy. We just have to remember to use them. In my time with Jesus this week, I read in Matthew about the story where Jesus walks on water (Matthew 14:22-33). This takes place soon after Jesus performs the miracle of feeding five thousand people from a few loaves of bread. When they were done, Jesus sent the disciples to their boat to go back across the other side of the lake. While they did this, Jesus went into the hills alone to pray. While the disciples were in the boat, a huge storm came upon them, and they were scared. Then they saw something in the distance and were scared it was a ghost, but it was Jesus. He was walking on the water towards them. Then here comes the good part. When the disciple Peter walks on water… watch this video, there’s a huge lesson here.
I love this story for so many reasons. I mean seriously, can you imagine seeing anyone walk on water? Seems completely impossible, something we just couldn’t wrap our minds around. When the disciples were in the boat about to head out, we see in the video a great picture of their doubt, their frustrations and their lack of faith. At this point, they have seen numerous miracles performed by Jesus and yet they still doubted. I don’t know about you but that makes me feel a little bit better about myself. I am not the only idiot out there. I mean these guys actually saw miracles with their own eyes, we just read about them. Well, that’s a lie. We see miracles every day but we attribute them to man and not our Savior. But the point is, they saw them and they still doubted. I don’t feel as bad in times I am doubting. It’s human nature, it’s our sinful nature and it’s completely natural and easy to do. When Jesus came towards them walking on the water, Peter calls out to him and says “Lord, if it is really you, tell me to come to you by walking on water.” (Matthew 14:28). Jesus responds with “All right, come.” (verse 29). As we see in the video, Peter focuses on Jesus and the unimaginable happens. As he keeps his eyes completely focused on Jesus, he begins to walk on water. But then his sinful nature took over. The second he turned back and looked, the very second he took his eyes off Jesus, he sank. In that moment Jesus reached out and grabbed him and saved him and said “You don’t have much faith, why did you doubt me?” (verse 31). There are two points here I want each of you to understand. 1. We are all “Peter”. I am Peter. You are Peter. We are all Peter. Every single day of our lives. I strive to not be, but its human nature. It’s in me and it’s who I am. I long to solely keep my eyes on Jesus. But it’s inevitable that I will look back, I will look down and I will look all around. The distractions of this life, the guilt and pain from the past, the fear of looking ahead into the future, the anxiety of looking around at everything else that is going on. Life happens and we lose sight of Jesus. Then we sink. We begin to drown when we take our eyes off him. Thankfully every single time He picks us back up. But it may not be immediately. It may be that he lets us struggle for a while, but every single time He rescues us. 2. Anything can happen when we keep our eyes on Jesus. Miracles happen every day. We are faced with the impossible every day. That looks differently in each of our lives. But, we are strategically placed in positions in our life where the journey seems impossible. For me, it was cancer. The good news is that Jesus enters in to our journey no matter what it is. In faith we trust him and we follow him and it happens. The impossible. It’s when we fix our eyes on Him. The One who made us, the One who saved us, and the One who is waiting to lead us. I wrote about this in a previous post, but I remember clearly this summer a moment when the Lord was speaking this very thing to me. We were driving back from our vacation in Florida, just a short week after my cancer diagnosis. We were headed back to reality and a huge unknown. A pet scan, chemotherapy, not knowing if I cancer anywhere else. So many unknowns. I was drowning. I was so overwhelmed at the thought of all the possibilities. I was literally drowning and suffocating in my fears. As I was driving, the rest of my family was asleep. As I was driving I clearly heard the Holy Spirit speaking to me and telling me “Just keep your eyes on me. Just like you are keeping your eyes on the road ahead to drive and not run off the road. Keep your eyes on me. Don’t look around or behind you. Keep your eyes on me. I will carry you through. This road will be ugly and it will be hard. But I will never leave you. Keep your eyes on me.” So I did. It was hard and it still is. It is hard for all of us. Especially when life gets real. When there is pain, when there is struggle, when there is suffering. It is extremely difficult. It was something and it is still something I have a hard time doing. I have to constantly remind myself to just look to him. Focus on Him. Who he is. What he has done in my life. Trusting he will continue to do good. That he will continue to do the impossible. So today, I am going in for an ultrasound to look at my ovary. There could be another cyst there and there could be nothing. But, I am trust Him and believing He is enough. No matter what. For me to live is Christ, to die is gain. No matter what Jesus is enough. Every single day, Jesus may it all be for you. In my suffering and difficulties, may you be glorified. May you use my pain for your gain. My prayer is that someone will know YOU better or know you for the first time because of my journey. #teamholly #jesusitsallforyou #cancersucks