A Message for You — May 21, 2009

Focus on your source of strength

by PASTOR LARRY D. ROWLAND

Rockford Baptist Church

Sports have become more daring and dangerous during this past generation. Not content with just the more traditional sporting events like soccer, baseball, football, basketball and hockey, many young people today have become enamored with “extreme sports.” Doing skateboard tricks down huge ramps, riding bicycles at breakneck speeds down mountains, seeing how many spins one can do while skydiving out of airplanes-these are the thrills that many young people are seeking today.

One of these extreme sports is called big mountain skiing. To perform this sport, a person wearing skis is dropped from a helicopter near the top of a mountain. This courageous skier has no choice but to descend down the mountain going through trails and jumping over cliffs that he has never seen before. The scenery is breathtaking in its beauty, of course. But one wonders how much of the view could ever be enjoyed because of the risks involved.

When world champion extreme skier Kim Reichelm was asked how someone could ski down a strange mountain and survive, this matter-of-fact answer was given: What you focus your eyes on becomes critical on the side of a mountain. Look at the spaces between the trees; the exits where you hope to be traveling. Don’t stare at what you don’t want to hit.

This same principle is true in navigating the dangers of life. Too many people focus all of their attention on their problems and obstacles. Their troubles consume their life. Instead of focusing on their source of strength and help, they only see the pitfalls and roadblocks of life. During some difficult times, the author of Hebrews encouraged some people who were enduring persecution to fix their eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of their faith (Heb. 12:2).

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