Isaac, my three-month-old son, recently went through a stage in which he learned that I am not only different than other people, but I am his favorite! I am soaking it up! I know from working with kids of all ages that Isaac will go through stages of having many other favorites: his dad, the dog, a sibling, friend, teachers down the road, etc. But right now, his eyes are all for Mom. And, I love it!
I remember the first time Isaac looked at me. It was the moment that the nurse put him on my chest after he was delivered. He looked straight into my eyes and I knew that my life would never be the same. He didn’t really make eye contact with me again until he was just a week or so old. He looked with so much adoration. “You really like me,” I thought with bewilderment. He hadn’t built any history with me, tested whether or not he could trust me, yet there was genuine love in his eyes. That, I thought, must be what God wants from us— a pure, untested faith and adoration. That moment started the slow build to Isaac’s infatuation with his mom.
Isaac’s eyes-for-mom really made me aware of how we can be assured of not missing out on anything when we keep our eyes on the Father. One day, Isaac was glued to my face. My husband, Grant, was talking and talking, trying to catch Isaac’s gaze. We’ll both do anything to get a smile from the baby! Finally, I moved my head over toward Grant’s, and Isaac finally shifted his gaze and gave Grant a big grin. I wonder if we could have the same devotion to God. What would my life look like if I only looked at something new when He led me right to it? How full of peace and purpose would my life be, if I could truly practice unwavering devotion to Him like this?
I find myself often wondering if I’m doing enough in my job, or at home, just in life in general. That anxiety causes me to think of new ways to organize things, new projects, or come up with different tasks constantly. But, what if I just stayed the course, keeping eyes on Jesus, until He led to something new? What if I, or our whole church, had that much adoration?
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” (Heb 12:1-3)
There are several things that cause us to shift our gaze, according to the author of Hebrews, including weariness, opposition, sin, and hindrances. But, Jesus was a great example. He kept His gaze on the Father through pain, mocking crowds, religious leaders and family members, and a plan that may have seemed less than ideal. But, He kept His trust in the Father, and we can, too.