I usually have a co-driver in the car, one that constantly reminds me: “Look where you drive!” We actually have a saying that has kind-of reached “joke status” in our family that goes something like this: Look where you drive; don’t drive where you look. I believe there is a spiritual lesson in that saying.
Recently I’ve been reading through Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians. In explaining (actually defending) his ministry among them, Paul highlights some of the difficulties he experienced as a messenger of the God and a missionary bringing the message of salvation to Corinth. He says that, although the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a spiritual treasure, it is held in “jars of clay” (4:7), referring to himself as just a human and frail missionary who is exposed to persecutions, struggles, opposition and many other challenges. He faced tremendous difficulties in seeking to share the Gospel with them.
However, Paul reasons that it is all worth it since it is not about him as a vessel, but about the treasure (the Gospel of truth) that he in his weakness “carried” to them. He ends this section by explaining how he was able to endure the many struggles and difficulties. It was all because of his true focus, where his eyes are, where he is looking. The final verse in the chapter (4:18) sums it up: “For we fix our attention, not on things that are seen, but on things that are unseen. What can be seen lasts only for a time, but what cannot be seen lasts forever.”
So, it’s where you look, it’s on what/whom you focus, that counts.
When life on earth gets tough (and it does and will continue to do so), we have to learn to “look where we drive”, in other words, keep your end destination in focus. Don’t look at the world around you, the difficulties you face, the sins that trip you up, but rather look beyond this temporary life. The author of Hebrews puts it this way: Let us run the race “fixing our eyes on Jesus” (12:1-2).