Eyes on the Master
By Van Walton

“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance…” Ephesians 1:18 (NASB)

I felt myself waking up. You know, that time between deep sleep and early morning sounds, the time of day before the alarm clock rings and the first car rolls down the street … not yet daylight, but no longer dark.

Oh, sleep had been so sweet. I resisted waking up, dreading the circumstances I would face on this new day. Rolling over I forced my eyes to open.

There on the floor, five feet from my bed, I spotted my dog, wide-awake – staring at me, his eyes on his master. Hearing the wind and pounding rain outside – a picture of my recent mood – I shuttered and squeezed my own eyes shut again.

I remembered that my husband was away on a business trip, meaning I would have to deal with today’s events alone. My life felt like it had reached a crescendo recently. So, I wanted to snuggle deeply, and hibernate like a mama bear.

I fluffed my pillow and noticed my dog, unmoving, focused with his eyes on his master.

Today I had a meeting with my son’s teachers. In the past, these meetings had accomplished little. Our conversations focused on ways to motivate my son but they seemed to achieve minimal results. The last time I met with his teachers I lost control and, in extreme frustration, broke down and cried – in front of them! When I walked out of the building, I vowed to never return. Now, that is exactly what loomed on my calendar.

I willed myself to sit up. My dog crawled toward me – his eyes on his master.

Also today, I had to drag a trunk-load of boxes through the cold rain and into the gym, my contribution to the garage-sale fundraiser. Remembering I would be alone because no one else had volunteered, I felt resentful.

In addition, I could no longer postpone that uncomfortable conversation with my neighbor. She needed to pay up. I had helped her out when she wanted me to pick up her order for her. Twice my friend who made the sale had reminded me that my neighbor never mailed the payment for it. Now her bill was overdue. I was supposed to get the money from my neighbor. Oh, I hated being the go between!

I stood up and slumped, all the while wishing I could crawl back into bed.

A cold nose nuzzled at my ankles. I glanced at my dog with his tail wagging and his eyes steadfastly fixed on his master.

Staring back, I managed a weak smile and reached down to pet him. I marveled at his devotion.

Where were my eyes? Had I focused yet this morning? Yes, most certainly on my own dreaded issues. Yet, here right before my eyes, my dedicated dog had a message for me. His first act upon waking: turn toward the master, and focus.

At that moment I realized, “My eyes are not focused on my Master.” Knowing what to do, I walked over to the window and knelt down to pray.

Jesus, Master of my life, I turn my eyes toward You, begging You to forgive me. I forgot about You and that Your mercies are new every morning. All I can think about right now is the problems of today, and how I am going to deal with each difficult assignment. Yet You have promised to guide me in all wisdom, if I would just come to You and ask. You provide for me and You protect me. You are the perfect Master, and I trust that You will lay out a path for me today, in Your comforting Name, Jesus, I pray, Amen.

Related Resources:
Do You Know Jesus?

Dear Jesus: Seeking His Light in Your Life by Sara Young

Visit Van Walton’s blog

From the Pound to the Palace by Van Walton

Application Steps:
Stop and focus your eyes right now on Jesus.

Reflections:
Jesus’ followers called Him “Master.” Who do I call “master?”

Have I truly invited Jesus to be my Master?

Do I believe that knowing Jesus will change my attitude toward life’s challenges?

Power Verses:
Matthew 6:22-23, “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness.” (NIV)

Hebrews 12:1-2, “…let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us…fixing our eyes on Jesus.” (NASB)


12 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Van,

Thank-you for being the vessel to remind me of the importance of focusing on Christ first and formost in all situations.

Anita

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thank you from the bottom of my heart I needed to read this today. Being a single woman trying to run after God's heart can be challenging on most days, yet when most of your friends are married or getting married. Some are even taunting you because you're not. Can even be worse. You begin to focus on what you see and not on God.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I could relate so well to your words today. I too, at times, never want to get out of bed fore I just want to sleep to keep from having to deal with the worldly things. I too, had a difficult time with my son in school over the past 3 years. I too, cried in front of school teachers and others. I prayed along the way but it was still very difficult. I needed to be reminded on keeping my eyes on my master.
Gwen

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for reminding me of our need to focus on the Lord and not all of the stuff in our lives that distracts, discourages, and drags us down. It is helpful to know others struggle with dealing with the issues of life that are not very pleasant, but necessary to live life in this world. Psa 44:3 encouraged me as well this morning-paraphrased--It was not my arm that brought me victory, but it was the Lord's right hand, right arm and the light of His face, for He loves me. (even when circumstances are less than "ideal" and somewhat frustrating). As somewhat of a control freak at times, this is also a good reminder!!:)

Blogger Colima said...

Thank you for this post! I needed to be reminded today to keep my eyes on Jesus!

Blogger sunshineperri said...

With tears in my eyes, I thank you for this post. I try so hard to put The Lord first, but like everyone human, get bogged down with our daily life.
I am casting my eyes towards my master and thanking him for everything.
I know that Jesus has a plan for your son. Listen and you will hear.
Thank you,
Bunny

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Van,
I had a hard time getting out of bed this morning - I could sure relate to your words!

As a teacher (for students with emotional disabilities) I can tell you, having a parent break down into tears in front of us helps us appreciate more the effort she's giving at home...and serves as a gentle reminder that although our interactions with students are temporary, a parent's are not-- and school frustrations can impact an entire household 24/7, sometimes with no respite in sight. I hope your meeting with your son's teacher went well (and your conversation with your neighbor, and...)

Peace, Giggles, & Blessings,
Renee :0)

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This so hits home. You know when you are in that spot when you have no idea how to grapple with God's plan and why you are going through what you are going through. You know, those blinding storms of life. But how reassuring it is to know that our Master is firmly in control if we can keep our eyes and hearts on Him, we will have victory.My son struggled for about 5 or 6 years with dyslexia but God is faithful and has pulled us both through it. I really needed to hear this today. Thanks so much!

Stephanie

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you...I needed to "hear" that....eyes on the LORD!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have had the same issues with my son. My meetings produced short-lived results. I am considering homeschooling him (although I have never thought I would (or could) do homeschool).

This along with some other issues with kids, a dear friend who is very ill and may not live unless God intervenes...and some personal issues have put my eyes on problems.

Today I received an email with the scripture: Is. 65:24 Before they call I will answer.
It speaks of God's faithfulness and that He sees our plight.

I must learn (or relearn) how to rest (trust) in God.

Thanks for the reminder!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this devo. It is me exactly. I am so glad that I am not alone but my sisters in Christ sometimes feel and react the same way. It was the perfect reminder for me today even though it is almost over. I will print it and read it tomorrow and the next day too.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This devotional touched my heart.
Thank you so much!

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