In a world riddled with fear and anxiety everywhere, we look, now more than ever it's essential for us to keep our focus on things other than what this world has to offer. It's essential for us to keep our eyes on Jesus. In this video, you’ll hear from our campus pastors and family pastor to kick off our new series, “Eyes on Jesus.” Our very own Lead Pastor, Jeff Simmons, has written a book on this topic of fear and anxiety, addressing it from a biblical perspective. In it are challenging questions and topics for us as Christ-followers to dive into as we look to Jesus for peace and healing in today's world. “Eyes on Jesus, Psalm 23 - A Guide to Overcoming the Worry and Stress in Our Lives and Culture.”
ANXIETY IN TODAY'S WORLD
Most, if not all, of us likely have experienced several sleepless nights due to stressful or anxious feelings that we just can't shake. Especially with all that's going on in our nation and world, it can feel like the burdens are so heavy that we just need to do... something. Anything.
So, we fill our lives with potential solutions – more money, a bigger house, a new relationship, new technology – thinking that one of these things will bring relief to the anxiety that is brimming just below the surface, begging to explode into panic.
What if there's something more than these things that can solve our struggles with anxiety? What if the issue isn't actually ours to fix, try harder, or worry ourselves sick with? What if we weren't alone in all of this?
Friend, you are not alone, and your fears, worries, and anxiety does not need to have control over your life any longer. True freedom from fear and anxiety lies in a person, and His name is Jesus. God created us and desires for us to have His very best – and that does not include us living in crippling fear or anxiety. It includes a life that is full of love, depth, peace, and joy. Because when we fix our Eyes on Jesus, we are letting go of looking for solutions for our anxiety in anything else other than Him. Our gaze becomes set on the Maker, the Healer, the Guide, and the One who brings us into perfect peace when we are steadfast in our trust in Him.
FIXING OUR EYES ON HIM
Our world is full of distractions. Jobs, family, friends, hobbies, sports games, kids' activities, church activities, home projects... the list can go on and on of things that can so easily consume our lives and steal our attention. And when you look at that list, you may be thinking, "But none of those things are bad... right?"
No, those things in and of themselves are not bad by any means. Actually, they're gifts from the Lord that He's blessed us with, and we should celebrate that we have the opportunity to enjoy them.
However, it's less what we are distracted by than it is what we are distracted from. When we allow the stressors of each day, the busy lifestyle we maintain, or the habits that we keep to become things that take so much of our attention, we may begin to realize that these things that are meant to be gifts are deterring us from delving into a stronger, deeper relationship with Christ. They are taking our eyes from Him and putting them on lesser things that pale in comparison to the Maker of each of these things.
Problems will arise – as you likely know. But, when we put your eyes on our problems, they get bigger. When we fix your eyes on Jesus, HE gets bigger. He is meant to be our focus, our guide, our friend, even in the midst of life's hangups and challenges. He is greater, friend, so let Him be where your heart's attention is – and see what, in turn, changes in your daily walk with Him.