God’s protective glasses enhance sight

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I’ve never been tempted to glance or gaze at an eclipse.  But were I to, I’d be sure to use protective glasses. As dangerous as a solar event might be, gazing at the world with the naked eye is far more so.  Especially perilous is this unfiltered sight during our current upside-down times when the majority of institutions consider ‘good’ what God calls ‘evil’. (see Isaiah 5:20)

Solar Eclipse glasses

Yet often I unwittingly and quite stupidly look at the world around me without protective glasses.

I’m talking about spiritual glasses, God-glasses:

  • Psalm 16:18 – 19  I keep my eyes always on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure.

What can we draw out of King David’s example and implicit counsel? Much!

Keeping our two eyes on God at all times:

  • requires looking toward God no matter what is going on in the world.
  • implies that ‘shaking’ or troubling instability is normal.
  • enjoins agreement between the eyes to look primarily and firstly at God.
  • assumes glasses are meant to assist BOTH eyes to see the same thing, equally well.
  • indicates seeing God PLUS! Since there is no mention of stumbling or blockage of visibility, looking at God is a kind of looking through or by means of God, but safely and accurately to where one is going. It includes a correct understanding and truthful contextualization or framing of what is going on around. In the natural world, people use the sun for this purpose. Other than those special eclipse-viewing occasions, one doesn’t just gaze AT the Sun.  We see BY means of the Sun.
  • results in a glad heart, a rejoicing self, a peaceful body.  Viewing the world THROUGH the filtering knowledge of God is mental and emotional sanity and physical health.

What alternatives are there for understanding all things, if you reject God-glasses?  Without access to the Creator’s view of the world, one is left to take in and make sense of everything through unprotected eyes.  Jesus diagnosed this condition and warned, “But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness..” Matt 6:23a

  1. resulting in harm
  2. resulting in poor vision and no sense of location OR direction
  3. resulting in fear and depression, due to unfiltered content
  4. resulting in confusion in moral issues
  5. resulting in suspicion of others, isolation during this life, and loneliness
  6. resulting in resignation because of ignorance of Holy Spirit power and other resources available to the spirit-born Christian
  7. resulting in cynicism when unable to glimpse reflections of God’s goodness and glory
  8. resulting in forever death with concomitant permanent isolation

So why doesn’t everyone take advantage of these glasses?  Is it because it’s difficult or costly to secure a pair?

Not difficult for those empty or poor people, the ones who know their vision is lacking or harmed.

But if you think you don’t need any glasses to see fine….

eyeglasses

And you’re more concerned by how you might look goofy in the world’s estimation wearing God-Glasses…..

At the least it’ll cost you your pride, your already-mapped out plan for your life and your reputation.  At the most, it could cost you your pilgrim life.

Question: How badly do you want to see correctly?  How badly do you want true and lasting health and happiness?

The delight-filled duty of joy

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Do you realize that the God who created the entire universe, the one and only God,

  • is a happy God?  

 

If we are Christians, then we serve the Lord of Joy as His happy and glad ambassadors.

Dangerous Duty of Delight

 

John Piper’s book on joy

 

 

 

 

Once you SEE with open eyes that joy is both the fuel and result of biblical Christianity, then you can’t escape this doctrine.  The Bible is peppered with references to our joy, delight, pleasure and happiness in God.  Hebrew has several words like  ashar and simcha and sasson and the significant Greek word for this state of well-being is chara  (as in Acts 8:8 – there was ‘megas chara’ when Philip shared the good news of God who came to Earth as a man, aka the Christ)

Oil of joy

Here is how my morning thoughts have gone this week:

 

 

 

 

  • Focusing on what is permanent is healthier than meditating on circumstances, which in THIS world are always going to be temporary.
  • All the permanent facts of my life are AMAZINGLY and DELIGHTFULLY GOOD and HOPE-FILLED.  Nothing in my permanent future bodes ill!  It’s all going to be blessing.
  • My thoughts about permanent matters affect not only my moods, but how I relate to others.
  • If I am a Christian, then when I was regenerated, the Holy Spirit came into me and permanently, eternally altered my spiritual DNA.  The Holy Spirit is the archetypal agent of Joy.  I have Divine Joy, the 3rd member of the Holy Happy Trinity living with me, in me.  That gives NEW meaning to the assertion that the Joy of the Lord is my strength (Nehemiah 8:10)
  • Joy of the Lord - butterfly

 

 

  • Part of my new makeup is gift – already imparted to me forever.  The Holy Spirit – God’s agent of Joy and Holy Happiness,  is both INSIDE me and around me.  Do you remember reading this fact? –  He has girded me with gladness (Psalm 30:11)

With all that God has done FOR us, He also trusts us and is training us to use some resources and tools that He now provides via His immaterial but living Word.  Daily we are to:

  •  prepare our minds for action. (1 Peter 1:13)
  •  PUT ON new clothes (Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.Col 3:12)
  • Strap on our defensive gear, especially the Belt of Truth –  the outer part of that permanent Holy Belt of Gladness – (Eph 6:14) 

These are some of my prayer-filled thoughts that I engage in each early morning before I face the world.   They sort me out. They encourage me. They help me remember that I am NOT my own but His.  I have a duty each day to be ready to exude, offer, shed, share, sprinkle and spill out that counter-cultural vibe of true joy that comes from the God who is IN me, AROUND me, THROUGH me and definitely FOR me.

Everyone is saddened and heavy-ladened with something.  Everyone needs a lift.  We believers are permanently connected to a universe of grace.  We have NOTHING to lose! So be gratuitous with your grace. Your Father in Heaven will beam.  He will not chide you for wanton waste of living water.  The world is thirsty!

Addiction and joy

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