“O our God, wilt thou not judge them? for we have no might against this great company that cometh against us; neither know we what to do: but our eyes are upon thee.”
II Chronicles 20:12
Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah were about to be attacked by a combined army of confederate kings. The great King Jehoshaphat set himself to seek the Lord, called the people to a fast, and gathered the people together to ask God for help. In his prayer, Jehoshaphat acknowledged their lack of strength and wisdom, “we have no might against this great company that cometh against us; neither know we what to do,” but also their determined focus, “our eyes are upon thee.” Judah was resolved to keep their eyes on the Lord. God answered their prayer, and wrought a great victory.
It is important at all times, but especially times of difficulty and temptations, to keep our eyes on the Lord. One of the very common expressions in the world of sports is, “Keep your eye on the ball.” Whether one is playing baseball, football, basketball, or golf, it is essential that the attention not be taken from the ball. This is fundamental. Games are lost because at a crucial time in the contest, the athlete is distracted and fumbles a pass or misses an easy play. Possible victory can become defeat because of distraction in a critical moment. There is an equally common expression in the Christian world, “Keep your eyes on Jesus.” This is a fundamental discipline in the lives of believers.
It is easy to get distracted. We can find ourselves focusing on our problems, concentrating on our apparent lack of resources, gazing at the wicked that appear to be prospering, or staring at our past failures rather than beholding God’s present promises. When we get our eyes off of the Savior, it will eventually result in our experiencing defeat instead of the victory we have been promised. What a great lesson for all of us.
When trouble comes and we are tempted to worry or fear, let’s remember to keep our eyes on the Savior. If Jehoshaphat’s focus had been on the enemy rather than on the Lord, the outcome would certainly have been different. Someone has said, “Glance at your problems, while gazing at the Lord.” There is great wisdom in that advice. We cannot ignore our difficulties, but we do not have to give them the focus of our attention. That belongs to the Lord.