For I have often told you, and now say again with tears, that many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction; their god is their stomach; their glory is in their shame. They are focused on earthly things. [Philippians 3:18-19 (HCSB)]

golden-silk-spider-Nephila clavipesI have a love-hate relationship with my camera and its autofocus. An enormous golden silk spider hangs over the boardwalk we take through the mangroves to the beach. Officially the Nephila clavipes, the female of this species is the largest non-tarantula-like spider in North America. This impressive arachnid has spun her giant orb-like web high above the walkway. She often scares tourists when they glance up to see her suspended above their heads. While I managed to get a shot that of spider, I’d hoped to get a few more of others that have spun their webs down closer to the boardwalk. Autofocus, however, was my enemy. Because their webs were nestled in the trees, the camera looked right through the spiders and focused on the large branches and leaves behind them. My camera focused only on the spider when nothing was behind the creature, but it had plenty on which to focus when pointed at the spiders in the mangroves. The ease of having a small point-and-shoot camera that is so easy to use keeps me loving (but occasionally hating) it.

Similar to a camera with autofocus, we occasionally focus on the wrong things in life. The consequences, however, are far worse than a few blurry photos. Like my camera, we look at the big things in the background—the unimportant things—rather than what is right in front of us. We automatically focus on all that we lack rather than the little that we have, on all that’s wrong rather than what is right, and on the doors that are shut rather than the door that is open. We worry about our tomorrows rather than focusing on today and see all of the reasons we can’t rather than the reason we can. We focus on the mistakes of yesterday rather the possibility of tomorrow and how bad we are rather than how great our God is. In short, we focus on the world instead of focusing on God. He’s right there in front of us but, sometimes, all that other stuff in the background keeps us from seeing Him! We need to set our autofocus on God and His promises rather than the world and our problems.

Focus on giants – you stumble. Focus on God – Giants tumble. [Max Lucado]

When trouble comes, focus on God’s ability to care for you. [Charles Stanley]

So we do not focus on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. [2 Corinthians 4:18 (HCSB)]

Let us run with endurance the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith, [Hebrews 12:1b-2a (HCSB)]

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