When I first started driving, I remember a day when I glanced in the rearview mirror for a second too long.
A friend was following me in her own car, and so I glanced in the rearview mirror to make sure that she was still behind me. Well I must have glanced for a split second too long because when I looked back ahead of me I realized that I was merely inches away from hitting the curb, which I unsuccessfully avoided.
Although nothing happened except my tire bumping into the curb, I learned something that day that actually goes way beyond just driving. Something that affects my life.
When I spend too much time looking in the rearview mirror, I miss what’s right in front of me.
I do that a lot with life.
I glance in the rearview mirror of yesterday and I miss out on what’s happening right now, today. I focus on what’s already gone and I barely look back in time to notice what’s still coming. I fix my eyes everywhere but on the face of Jesus in front of me.
If you relate at all to that, here are three reasons why you should start fixing your eyes ahead:
#1: WHEN I LOOK AHEAD, I CAN ENJOY MY PRESENT
If I waste my time looking in the rearview mirror of my life, then I have no time to enjoy the moment I’m in. I’m constantly looking back at what was or what did happen, and then I don’t see what’s currently happening.
This present moment is a gift. Keep your eyes open and ready to embrace it. Enjoy the moments that God gives you and waste no time wishing for the moments that have already past.
We can’t get those moments back, but we can enjoy the moment God has allowed us to step into today.
#2: WHEN I LOOK AHEAD, I CAN FIX MY EYES ON JESUS
In Matthew 14, Jesus is walking on the water towards his disciples. In total faith, Peter obeys when Jesus tells him to come and he gets out of the boat to walk towards Jesus on the waves.
I think we all know what happens next.
He begins looking everywhere except at the One in front of him. And he begins to sink.
He started looking around at the wind and the waves. Maybe he even looked behind him at the boat and wondered why he got out in the first place. He pays attention to all of the scary wind around him and he lets his fear take over his faith, so he begins to sink.
Looking back at my past or around at all the problems from yesterday, or worrying about the future, can all cause me to react the same way. I can let my fear take over my faith when I take my eyes off him in front of me and I look around and behind.
Keep your eyes ahead on Jesus. Hebrews 12:1-2 tells us, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of God.”
Look to Jesus.
Keep your eyes fixed on him and move forward confidently into your future.
#3: WHEN I LOOK AHEAD, I FIND PEACE
My past can bring up anxiety. My past can bring up regret.
My past can remind me of all the things I’m not anymore or all the things I lost or all the things I sometimes wish I didn’t experience. And dwelling on all of that stuff can rob me of a lot of things including my peace and joy.
When I instead choose to look ahead and fix my eyes on Jesus, I can find true joy and peace that comes from embracing what he’s blessing me with now.
The past is gone, friends. Jesus is standing in front of you, asking you to come and step out on the water towards what he has for you next.
And it might be scary or uncertain, but I promise it’s also going to be worth it to walk on the water with him.
Keep your eyes ahead.