When i was a child, I rode 5 miles downhill to school. I could do 30 MPH going and 5 MPH coming home. I learned that if I started at a rock or a pothole, it would suck me right in. The state police warn people to not stare at an accident in front of you, but look up and steer to safety.
What do you stare at? In counseling we have learned that when people spend all their focus on: the past,on being unlike one’s parents, one how they were hurt, on what they have done, on the irrationality and severity of their obsessions , on what they don’t have, what they can’t do, who isn’t in their lives, on their fears of the future etc etc. they make no progress. Like Peter, we are distracted by the sound of the wind and waves and take our eyes off of the Lord.
We become so preoccupied by our mess that we secretly believe that we are unfixable.
Oh we need to acknowledge that we are the chief of sinners dwelling in a sin damaged world, with thoughts and feelings and “ways” that are not like God’s.
BUT DON’T DWELL ON THE NEGATIVE. Take them to God and ask him if he thinks that his grace is sufficient. I remember one troubled lady who went to a business women’s lunch in which Christians shared testimonies. At the ending invitation she prayed, “Lord if you think you can make anything out of the mess that is me; you are welcome to try.”
Obviously I am suggesting we TURN OUR EYES UPON JESUS LOOK FULL IN HIS WONDERFUL FACE. BUT HOW?
Remember the important mix of both heart and habits. Many Christians are so afraid of rote works and rituals that they don’t realize the importance of backing up with good habits our desire to return to our first love in which it was easy to keep focused on Jesus. In a marriage it is good to set aside a date night and defend it from all distractions. This does not rob the relationship of loving spontaneity but insures the nurturing of the relationship. I refer you back to the noon, supper, and bedtime “ritual” of seeing the Lord in something he has helped you do,something he has done in others or through them for you, or some little part of life he has given you to savor.
If you do this as a habit, your brain will start to see him throughout the day .
The next time you catch yourself STARING, if it isn’t the Lord then pull your focus away and walk the current situation with him.