“Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways.” ~Proverbs 4:25-26
Have you ever watched a toddler navigate through something he’s really excited about? We have a loop in our house that Beckett loves to run over and over and over again. He’s usually giggling and laughing and – looking behind him as he runs. Most of the time, he’s hoping someone is chasing after him.
Yesterday, on the way home from our neighborhood playground we stopped by our friend’s house to chat, enjoy the sunshine and let the kids play for a few minutes. This particular friend of Beckett’s has a very cool kid-sized kid-driveable Mustang. Beckett was so excited to have a chance to drive the car, and I couldn’t help but notice that as he drove, he kept his eyes fixed backwards, watching the tires as they turned.
In our house, or on the road – one thing is bound to happen when Beckett looks behind him while charging full speed ahead. He’s going to hit a wall (or a tree, or a mailbox, or a person) He can’t safely navigate where he’s going without his gaze fixed securely in front of him.
Sometimes it can be hard to keep your eyes forward – to keep your gaze fixed upon the One who wants so desperately to lead us deeper than we can imagine.
I love this excerpt from Carry On, Warrior by Glennon Melton
‘It’s easy to spend time in the shallow end of faith. It’s not a real commitment. You can just hop in, stand around in tight circles, and people-watch. You can examine your nails, read, reread, and catch up on all the gossip. You can talk and talk and talk and come to a great many conclusions and decisions and still maintain your hairstyle and even avoid smudging your makeup.
I think the reason we don’t hear from people in the deep end as often is because they’re actually swimming. In the deep end, you have to keep moving. It’s hard to look cool. It’s tiring and scary even, since it’s just you and your head and your heart in the silence of the depths. There’s not much chatting or safety in numbers in the deep end. You have to spend most of your time there alone. And it’s impossible to get any solid footing. You just have to trust that the water will hold you, and you have no other choice but to flail about and gasp for air and get soaking wet, head to toe.’
That. That is what I want.
I want that kind of faith. The kind of faith where my eyes are fixed forward, where I am too busy kicking and flailing in the deep end to stand on the sidelines admiring my manicure, playing games, staring at the spinning tires or looking behind me to see if anyone is chasing me.
In church recently, the pastor said, “Make God North on your compass. Pursue Him first.” I want to know that no matter what is going on in my rearview mirror, I’ve got the sunroof open and the music blaring and I am going north. Heading into the deep end.