I was at Church and someone was rendering Charles Spurgeon’s conversion this way… Charles Spurgeon as a young man, cared little for the Lord. Then one day caught in a snow blizzard Charles got into a church where a humble preacher spoke about Christians needing to look up that the Lord. Then the preacher looked straight at Charles and said, “young man you need to look at the Lord”. Apparently Charles had a moment of theophany that led him to commit his life to the Lord. The person continued… All Christ expects us to do is to just look up at Him. “It is such an easy thing to do, isn’t it?”
I sat there thinking…. Technically, looking up at the Lord is the easiest thing to do, I don’t even have to move a finger. But in reality it is the toughest thing to do. For, to look up at the Lord, we have to first take our eyes off the idols that draw our attention. And if anyone thinks that it is easy, I’ll probably want to meet that person and garner some wisdom. I constantly find my attention going to my books, my blogs, my facebook page, my Netflix movies, my time spent getting up to date on current affairs from the Debt Limit debate in the US to the ‘2G Scam’ in India to the plight of Christians in the Middle East. Of course, none of these are wrong in themselves. But when they become distractions from looking up at the Lord they become captivating idols. That apart, I find a BIG part of my attention directed at my own self. I am my own idol. Taking my eyes off all of these idols and looking up at the Lord is not an easy thing to do. That is precisely why St. Augustine pleads in his Confessions, “Lord, keep thy countenance in front of mine eyes, always”.
To blithely assume that we can look up at the Lord because it is such an easy thing to do might be the most naïve self-assessment. We, ‘being human’, of the lineage of Adam and Eve, need to understand that our most basic proclivity is to hide from the Lord. Being modern we no longer have to ‘actually’ hide. This being an ‘instant-gratifying’ world, have so many idols to be en-capsuled within. Consequently, we can easily live in state of denial that the Lord exists at all. It is in cognizance of this sorry state of ‘being human’ that we need to make St. Augustine’s prayer our own, “Lord, keep thy countenance in front of mine eyes, always.” Looking Up at the Lord isn’t the easiest thing to do.