Our Eyes Look to the Lord Our God

by Mike Ratliff

1 To you I lift up my eyes,
O you who are enthroned in the heavens!
2 Behold, as the eyes of servants
look to the hand of their master,
as the eyes of a maidservant
to the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes look to the Lord our God,
till he has mercy upon us.
3 Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us,
for we have had more than enough of contempt.
4 Our soul has had more than enough
of the scorn of those who are at ease,
of the contempt of the proud. (Psalm 123 ESV)

The vast majority of people on planet Earth want nothing to do with the real Jesus. Many love and hold dear another Jesus, but he is one made up by people who don’t know the one who is real. Tragically, the numbers of professing Christians are growing continually who are also following another Jesus who does not resemble in least the one found in scripture. Those who hold dear the real Jesus are those who are entirely reliant upon the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Undoubtedly there are baby Christians who are not spiritually mature and whose faith is not strong. However, there are also huge numbers of “religious” Christians who live as if their “decision for Christ” many years ago is their fire insurance. Some of these are quite religious while others are simply calling themselves Christian as if it is some sort of family trait. Those who are completely reliant upon God, whose focus is His glory in all things are those who know the real Jesus and are known by Him. These are the believers whose eyes look to the Lord our God. They look unto God because this brings them knowledge of His countenance. Christians know God by interacting with Him in prayer, Bible Study, obedience and repentance. They are able to do these things with Him as they look unto Him, fully trusting Him to work out the details for His glory.

However, all believers have walks with God that have ups and downs. Sometimes they are on the mount while other times they are in the valley or somewhere in between. Sometimes, God will allow the enemy to take them down in defeat by cutting in on them in the race that God has set before them. When they take their eyes away from their Lord, distractions come. (Hebrews 12:1-2) Unless they are very careful, they will fall out of the race. This fall was caused by Spiritual leakage that began in the imagination over time. The enemy distracted them so that their eyes averted from the Master towards self. This may or may not involve some fleshly sin. It may be nothing more than doubt growing as to the veracity of their close walk with their Lord. When the eyes are averted from the Lord, the voice of the enemy may sound very much like the voice of another. That is when they hear themselves thinking that they shouldn’t have expected so much from their devotion to God. They condemn themselves for trying to attain a spiritual stature that is too high for any person to sustain. They are right no person can do it. It can only be sustained by remaining in the race and that requires eyes to be fixed on the Lord in complete devotion and obedience in full cooperation with Him in repentance. The one who remains in the race knows that no effort can be too high for their Lord’s sake.

Sometimes Christians can stumble in the race as the result of a crisis when they make a stand for God and Truth and know in their heart by the witness of the Spirit that all is right, but during the battle they take many fiery darts from the enemy and the cost can seem very high. It is at times like this that they may feel bereft of any support from anyone, even if it is there. God seems to not care about them. They feel beaten down and think that perhaps that stand was not so wise after all. Perhaps they should have listened to the more “careful” around them who never “take risks.” They start to believe that they were being highly pretentious or presumptuous in believing that God would be with them in the battle. It is at this time that it is crucial for the Christian who is still stinging from the battle in discouragement and doubt to recognize that something has been coming between them and God. What is it? That something cannot come in between Christians and God as long as they remain in the race with their eyes fully fixed on their Lord. It is as the enemy cuts in on the runner that distractions come into the mix.

What does God do here? Those who stumble and fall out of the race are still His. They are only wounded and confused and distracted. God will cause ministries to halt. He will bring service to full stop. What once flowed smoothly is now nearly impossible. It is only as God does this that the Christian who is thrashing about in self-reliance realizes what has happened. What is the cure? The Christian must get back in the race. How is that done? Prayer, repentance, submission, surrender, all culminating in the Christian giving all of self to God to do with as He sees fit. When this takes place, the eyes go back to Christ and the Christian reenters the race.

No Christian is immune from this happening to them. In fact, the more we work with God the more of a target we become. Never forget that God will allow our enemy to use people, even other Christians, as weapon bearers against us. Doubt and fear are what he wants to use to defeat us and he is not beyond using those very close to us or those we deeply respect as the means to deliver those weapons. The one in race easily overcomes doubt and fear, but the Christian who is distracted or mired in self-reliance or self-absorption or self-focus is highly vulnerable. Why? They are in Spiritual leakage mode and the enemy, even though limited by God, can easily deliver his weapons into their hearts.

Let us devote ourselves to running the race God has set before us. If we do this we will find that we will be working with Him instead of for Him. We will not have doubt nor will we be fearful no matter how fearsome the enemy appears. We will be devoted to the prayer closet and the Word of God and walking in repentance. We will be obeying our Lord no matter how severe the battle becomes. Those reading this who are wounded, fearful and doubtful must readjust your walk. You must get back into the race. If you do not then you will be mired in mediocrity. However, if you are in the race and are working with God instead of for Him be ever watchful of the one trying to cut in on you to make you stumble and fall out of the race. Soli Deo Gloria!

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18 thoughts on “Our Eyes Look to the Lord Our God

  1. Who have I in heaven but You? And to whom can I look to but You, all men have feet of clay. There is no God like You, and above You there is no one. You alone are my Rock and my Fortress, and a Strong Tower in a time of trouble. I consider You and You alone, Who endured such contradiction of sinners against Yourself…for my sake.

    It is You, Lord, that gives me the strength to get up after falling seven times. You alone change not, the grass withers and the flower fails but Your Word endures forever. And in Your hands I commend my spirit, both now and at my appointed hour. Jesus, my eyes are fixed upon You, my everlasting Life.

    Amen.

  2. Wow Mike………..very wise thoughts put into this article. He is your guide, thats for sure! Xclnt. To God be the glory………..

  3. I am in total submission to all things that You Lord, so graciously left in Your Word, and sent the Holy Spirit to guide us through this life to the eternal life. When I stumble and fall I know that I have taken my eyes off You, and You will set me back on that narrow, but difficult path. Praise You Most Glorious Father

  4. Mike ,
    You really have been anointed by the Lord.
    Thank you for leading us back to the only thing that matters. Praise God

    In Him
    Deb

  5. Mike,

    Thanks to God for using you to pen some of the things you mentioned in this post. Of recent, I have taken sever bashing for standing for Jesus and for truth. Praise God, He has kept me and helped me keep my eyes on Him, and not get discouraged. But I’ve been there before and remember the pain and feeling of….being regarded by other Christians as an outsider.

    In this latest attack, I have been branded “THE ACCUSER OF THE BRETHREN!” In retrospect, it doesn’t look like I can drop lower than that :-D That’s the lowest of the low.

    I’m not perfect. I certainly don’t know it all, but I am persuaded that I must live by what I know, as well as stand for it. Indeed, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Praise the Lord!

  6. Thank You Father! Thank You..For Using these God loving and God fearing men. Thank You Father for putting these pearls of wisdom into their hearts and into your words and this sheep was blessed by the message . Thank You Father, Thank You amen

  7. Wow Yomi, I can’t believe they called you “THE ACCUSER OF THE BRETHREN!”. It doesn’t sound like they know their bible very well. Hang in there brother! :-)

    Love your sister in Christ,
    Rachel

  8. Rachel,

    Dear sister, thanks. Indeed, God’s grace is sufficient. I am weak, but He is strong. None of these things move me; neither do I count my life dear to myself. He is all in all, the Lion of Judah, our Lord and Saviour! His name alone be praised.

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