“The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye be in single focus, pure, sound, your whole body will be well lighted” (Matt. 6:22, Wuest NT).
Focus. According to this verse, having focus allows for God’s light to flood your whole being. Of course, our focus must be pointed in the right direction for this to be possible. Rather than fixating on our circumstances, or on the allure of this world, we are called to fix our eyes on Jesus.
No wonder the enemy wars against our focus. In this digital age, images on screens flash before our eyes in hyper speed, incessantly jumping from one visual stimulation to the next. As a result, brains have been trained to skip rapidly from one subject to another. Focus has been stolen from us. I recently read a statistic stating that the average attention span has been reduced to 8.2 seconds!
The more the devil can steal your focus, the more he can steal your light. I love The Passion Translation’s rendering of our verse from Matthew about this: “The eyes of your spirit allow revelation light to enter into your being. If your heart is focused, the light floods in!”
If, and only if. If our heart is scattered, if our mind is fluttering all over the place, then light cannot flood into our spirit. Major areas of our lives will remain in darkness. We desperately need focus, for our own inner wellbeing.
Thankfully, focus is an area we can train ourselves in. In fact, as Christians we are called to do exactly that. The book of Colossians teaches us to set our minds on things above (Col. 3:2). If the Bible lays this out as an instruction, it’s because God is putting it within our grasp. We really can set our minds on Him; we really can learn to focus on heavenly realities. (For more on how to do so, read here).
Here are three quick tips I would recommend to you, if you desire to work out your attention span muscles:
- Set aside time each day to pray and feed the Word to your spirit. Start with a realistic, attainable goal. A daily window of quiet time is one of the very best settings for your focus to grow.
- Fight to protect that time. Turn off or silence your phone and put it in a drawer, out of sight. Train yourself to go longer and longer windows without checking any of your devices.
- Have a pad of paper with you during your intimate time with God. When a distracting thought comes into your mind about something you need to take care of, pause and write it down. This will help unclutter your mental space. Then turn the pad over and redirect your focus to the Lord.
One final thought. The ESV translates our verse for today, “If your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light” (bold emphasis mine). Having the eyes of our heart in singular focus on Jesus means health for our entire being; body, soul, and spirit. The more you train your focus, the healthier your spiritual eyes become. The healthier they become, the more full of revelation light you will be.
So, precious child, get to that training practice!
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