What’s Your Focus?

“The lamp of the body is the eye; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness?” (Matthew 6:22-23)

These verses are considered by some to be enigmatic and uncertain in meaning, almost oddly inserted in between some powerful verses on laying up treasure in heaven (:19-21) and serving only one master (:24).  But when you understand what :22-23 are driving at, they fit right in. 

It would be odd if these verses did not relate to those on either side of them, and the fact is, they do!  “The lamp of the body is the eye.” In other words, what you fix your eye on, directs the course of your whole life.  So Jesus is reminding us here to have a “single focus.”  With your physical eye, you can really focus only on one thing. You can see a number of things peripherally, but you can only truly FOCUS on one.

is the same with your life’s focus.  You can only truly “focus” on one thing: either earthly riches, or treasure in heaven. Sure, you can do some other things “peripherally” — just like you can see some things out of the corner of your eye. But you can’t really focus your life on more than one thing.  You can either focus on laying up treasures in heaven, as Jesus admonished in :19-21, or building wealth on earth. You can serve only one Master, as Jesus said immediately after: either Jesus, or riches or your own ego or something else. You can’t do both.  Whatever your spiritual “eye” is really focused on, will direct (or misdirect) your whole life.

All of which leads us to the question:  Is God and His kingdom your FOCUS, or your PERIPHERY?  It is the main, consuming passion of your life, or a “side show” to your business, career, family, or the other real passion of your life?  Jesus is saying here that you can really only focus your life on one main thing. What is that for you?

About Shawn Thomas

My blog, shawnethomas.com, features the text of my sermons, book reviews, family life experiences -- as well as a brief overview of the Lifeway "Explore the Bible" lesson for Southern Baptist Sunday School teachers.
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