by Dana Roberts
For those who recall the original “2020 Vision” article (), the challenge was to keep our hearts focused on Christ, our Perfect Savior, with 2020 vision. How many of us accepted this challenge? If we did, the bigger question is: “how well did we keep our hearts focused on our Perfect Savior all year long?” Surely, we’ve had many disappointments and distractions this year! As we take a moment to sincerely and honestly remember 2020, I encourage all of us to check our hearts. Have we let our disappointments and distractions lead to deception? Have we, like sheep, gone astray (Is. 53:6)?
In the original article, the busyness of life was discussed. But, to everyone’s surprise, this year many of us were forced to slow down. Many of us had our busyness put on hold for weeks. Did we take that time to focus on God or did something else consume our time and thoughts? Did we meditate on God’s Word day and night (Joshua 1:8) or did we stray further from Him?
As we now come to the end of 2020, if some of us find that we allowed something or someone to distract or disappoint us to the point of continual focus, the good news is that it’s not too late to change our focus! We may not have had perfect 2020 vision this year, but we can re-focus right now! The writer of Hebrews (12:2) encourages us to lay aside every sin and run with endurance the race that has been set before us. And we certainly are able to endure because we keep our eyes focused on Christ, the source and perfecter of our faith! The focus I’m speaking of is the focus of our hearts. We must focus the eyes of our hearts on Christ and Christ alone!
You may be wondering how to focus the eyes of your heart. Scripture tells us that when “we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9 HCSB) Thus, first we must confess. Enter God’s presence with a truly repentant heart to confess to Him that disappointments and distractions have taken the focus from Him. According to Noah Webster’s Dictionary (1828), to repent is to “express sorrow; change one’s mind.” We must acknowledge how we’ve sinned against God by allowing things of this world to distract and disappoint us, pulling us away from Him. We heart-fully ask Him to forgive us, knowing His Word promises His faithfulness to forgive.
And, yet, for some of us, we can honestly say we have kept our focus on Christ. Yes, we also have had disappointments and distractions, but we have not allowed those things to deceive us in wondering away from God. As we think about 2020, we can focus on the blessings of a year labeled “unprecedented.” Many of us can look upon this year as the year of opportunity to grow to be more like Christ.
This year gave many of us time to study God’s Word deeper, and to fall more in love with our Creator. It gave us time to truly reflect on Christ’s greatest command: Love God Most and Love Others Well (Matt 22:37-39). It gave us time to act upon this greatest command in a personal way. This year gave many of us time to re-evaluate our primary ministry. For instance, wives have learned that their husbands are their primary ministry, and husbands have learned how to love their wives as Christ loves the church (Eph. 4). This year gave many of us time to hear God give clear direction for other life decisions and ministries so that we can move into 2021 honoring Him. And last, but certainly not least, this year gave many of us the opportunity to stay focused on God by choosing to put Him above all else and trust in His sovereign plan.
Dear friend, I end this article by encouraging you to read Proverbs 4:20-27. Let God speak to you about the focus of your heart and staying on His path. May you be richly blessed this coming year as you stay focused on Christ and remember the blessings of 2020! May you grow to be more like Him in 2021!