How is your night vision?
It is common to hear older people say, “I don’t drive at night.” Why? Their night vision is not very good. So, they don’t want to take a chance of having an accident.
Even it your night vision is pretty good, have you ever spent the night in a strange place and woke up in the night and it’s pitch black. No light. Nothing to help you see a thing. It’s a strange and eerie feeling.
The Bible uses darkness as a metaphor for the fallen world in which we live. While we are commanded to “walk in the light,” there is a challenge of finding our way in culture that is dark and sinful.
Too often Christians lose sight of what is important. Their vision of heaven is clouded. Their spiritual eye sight becomes dim. The darkness of the devil’s devices overtakes them. In this regard Jesus issued both a warning and a challenge.
“A little while longer the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you; he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going. While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.” (Jn 12:35)
Like American soldiers who use night vision goggles to see the enemy and aid them in their military operations, Christians need “night vision” to see through the darkness of the devil’s devices. Four things are necessary if we are to have the right kind of spiritual vision.
(1) It begins with the ability to see with our spiritual eyes (Eph.1:18). To see sin for how bad it is. To see how the devil tries to trap us. To see the consequences of bad behavior. To see like Moses, who through the darkness of slavery was able to envision a brighter day for God’s people. In other words we need spiritual awareness.
(2) It progresses with the faith to believe. This has to do with having the right kind of attitude. The attitude of Jesus (Phil 2:5). Righteousness. Trusting. Faithful. Too many churches and Christians fall captive to darkness because of unbelief. Or they fail to realize their potential because of a lack of faith. Jesus said to the two blind men in Matthew 9:29, “According to your faith, be it unto you.” Faith is the yardstick by which our portion in life is measured. And it is the basis for spiritual vision.
(3) It leads to the courage to do. To do God’s work. To do what is right. To do what we know we ought to do. I just discovered one of the best definitions of courage that I’ve ever seen. Debra Oakland wrote, “Courage is the will to act upon the strength and power within the heart.” It’s not enough to know what is right. We are called to action. And that takes will power. But when the cause is greater than the circumstances, you will find the courage to act.
(4) It results in the hope to persevere. To persist. To hang on. Winfried Newman once said, “Vision is the world’s most desperate need. There are no hopeless situations, only hopeless people.” We need hope to endure the rigors of hardship. The ridicule of skeptics. The ignorance of unbelievers. The obstacles of adversity. And the doubts that try to betray us.
God has called us out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Pet. 2:9). He has given us the light of His Word to guide and direct us (Ps 11:105). Therefore, let us not walk in darkness, but let us “watch and be sober,” walking as sons and daughters of the light (1 Thess. 5:5).
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman