Yesterday our nation went wild about the total solar eclipse that spanned the USA. Those who were in the 100% totality viewing area experienced some of God's amazing handiwork. In preparing for this big event, there were plenty of warnings about protecting our eyesight from our fiery sun. In an eclipse it can be tempting to stare at the portion of visible sun because it does not seem as intense as usual. However, it is and the effects on a retina are permanent and blinding. So, we were instructed to take precautions by wearing trustworthy solar shields or viewing the phenomenon through shadows.
I gave this warning some thought yesterday...if I stare at the sun, I'll go blind. This was a good warning because it was true and it was necessary. My son would have stared at it all afternoon if he could, and I didn't blame him. How fascinating to see the sun shrink throughout the afternoon and end up looking more like a crescent moon than the big orange fireball that we're used to seeing. The warning was true and necessary.
But, let's put a spiritual spin on things. Turn the eclipse warning upside down. If we DON'T stare at the Son, then we will go blind!
Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. James 1:22
Here is another true and necessary warning: Keep your eyes fixed right on the Son, Jesus Christ, so your sin does not deceive you and cause you to become blind to it. When we take our eyes off of the Author and Perfecter of faith, then we will find ourselves excusing our sin, refusing to hear correction, and possibly even becoming so blind that we lead ourselves and those who follow straight to hell (Matthew 23).
Take off those excuse-making glasses, pray to God for a softened heart, and stare at the Son so that you may be alert and vigilant against the sin that is crouching at your door eager to control you.