When Our Own Eyes Deceive Us

One of my most vivid childhood memories is pedaling around and around our small cove on my blue and white ten-speed bike. There was a certain home in our cove with, what appeared at the time, a dangerously steep and lengthy driveway.  My eight-year-old-self thought that biking headlong down it seemed like just the way to keep life exciting. I’ll never forget the fear and awe I felt at the top of that death-defying plunge for the first time. It seemed daunting, insurmountable…would I even live to tell the tale?

You could imagine my shock last month when I went back to visit my childhood home and realized this “death-defying plunge” was completely unimpressive- it could barely pass for a hill at all. How could this be? How could my own eyes have so clearly deceived me?

I’m convinced that our physical eyes deceive us much more than we’d like to admit. Unfortunately, though, it often happens with things a lot more critical that the size of a driveway. Elisha’s servant in 2 Kings Chapter 6 is a prime example. He and Elisha faced circumstances that appeared much too intimidating to overcome. One of the kings in a nearby region was enraged that God had given Elisha the prophetic ability to know his plans. In his anger, the king set out to destroy Elisha. At daybreak Elisha’s servant went out of the house to find a huge army surrounding them. As you can imagine, he was scared to death. He didn’t think they’d survive, much less come out completely untouched.

I’ve been there. Battling fear. Believing that all of the things I once hoped for may be irreparably shattered by my circumstances. You?

Elisha’s servant may have been terrified, but Elisha saw what his servant couldn’t. 2 Kings 6:16 tells us Elisha’s response to him: “Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” What Elisha could see, not with his physical eyes but with his spiritual ones, were horses and chariots of fire surrounding them. Elisha prayed for his servant, that he’d also be able to see God’s protection. God granted this request, and the servant was filled with the peace and confident trust that comes as a result of believing God.

What in your life looks like an impossible feat?  What is causing fear and discouragement? These are the places we need God’s fresh perspective. May I encourage you ask Him to give you His viewpoint regarding your circumstances? Begin searching the scriptures and asking Him to reveal His Word to you. Just like He opened the servant’s eyes to see His protection, so He can open yours. His promises of protection and victory are capable of bringing back the hope and peace we all so desperately want.

Psalm 121:1-4

“I will lift up my eyes to the mountains;
From where shall my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.
He will not allow your foot to slip;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.”

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