Lift Your Eyes – Week 2 Day 1                        1/7/2018

Isaiah 40:26 (NIV)

Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name.  Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing.

Imagine for a moment that you are walking along a narrow path in a beautiful garden, with rose bushes and greenery surrounding you on all sides.  Now, follow that path as it continues onto a narrow wooden bridge over a raging river. After you cross the river, you follow that same path as it climbs upwards towards the top of a mountain.  There, it eventually leads across a small suspension bridge and over a deep valley to your final destination—a neighboring mountain peak with a grandiose view!

If heights make you a little uneasy like they do me, you would probably start paying a little more attention to your footing once you began crossing the narrow bridge over the river.  I would be keeping an eye out for any slippery areas or any places without railing too close to the sides of the bridge for fear of taking a tumble!  Before I made it across the suspension bridge, I would probably be staring down at the valley below me the whole time I was crossing the bridge–clutching whatever railing the bridge had,  white-knuckled and slowly willing my feet to move forward one in front of the other.

So what was the purpose of this little imaginary journey?  If you remembered, the narrow path stayed the same throughout all of the different settings: the garden, the river and the valley.  Each location, though, provided different obstacles that could tear your attention away from reaching that mountaintop goal ahead of you by keeping you distracted with your immediate surroundings—ones that had the ability to either trip you up or slow you down.

When you are going through personal valleys and hardships in your own life, stay focused on that mountaintop goal ahead–that vision God has given specifically to you.  Resist the urge to get caught up in circumstances that could cause you to stumble and lose sight of your goal.  This is obviously easier said than done, but we must be mindful of where our attention lies.  Do you often worry about things that never even happen?  Worrying is a tactic the enemy often uses to simply steal our peace and waste our emotional energy, all while keeping us distracted from our destination.  If our God made the stars in the heavens, knows them each by name and cares for them, how much more do you think He is interested in you? Or the issues you are worrying about?   Instead of worrying or struggling, surrender your cares to Him and lift your eyes up to the One who sits on high–the One who will not let you fall.  Praise His name and thank Him for taking care of your situation.  If so, you will soon realize that you can cross those daunting bridges without ever looking down again!

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