Oh Be Careful Little Eyes

Quote from Open Up Your Heart by Jeff Syverson

September 6

Oh Be Careful Little Eyes

Today’s Scripture Reading: Psalms 101:1-8  | Song 1:1-4:16  | 2 Cor. 8:16-24 | Proverbs 22:22-23

Today’s Scripture Focus: Psalm 101:1-8

“I will set before my eyes no vile (wicked, vain, evil, worthless) thing” (Psalm 101:3).

Images are powerful. One ancient tradition says that a picture is worth a thousand words. Indeed, we know it is true. Television is a powerful medium. So are movies. So is the Internet. Each is powerful for good or for evil.

Many become captivated by images only to become addicted to them. The epidemic of internet pornography is one example (and it is an epidemic). I know one person who has placed this verse (Psalm 101:3) above his computer monitor as a reminder not to surf into sin. Not a bad idea.

But it happens in more subtle ways, no less dangerous. Images form our thinking and values. Television and the movies shape our lives more than we know. I’m reminded of the wisdom of the prophet Jeremiah who wrote: “They followed worthless idols and became worthless themselves.” Another translation puts it: “walked after emptiness and became empty?” In other words, we become like the images we watch. Scary thought.

If images shape our thinking, then Paul’s teaching regarding the thought life applies to the images we place before our eyes as well: 

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.  [9] What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.” Philip. 4:8-9 (ESV). 

What images are filling your mind and heart?  How are they affecting your values, beliefs and lifestyle?  We do well to consider these things as we replace the worthless images with truth and beauty.

God of Glory, help me to dwell on thoughts and celebrate images which are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent and praiseworthy. Keep me from those images and thoughts that are empty, vain, worthless, evil and degrading. Make me aware of your glorious presence and seek your glory in all I do. Amen.

About pastorjeffsneighborhood

Born and raised in Minnesota, I have served in churches in Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon and California. I am a graduate of Crown College (MN) and George Fox Evangelical Seminary (OR). I have also done additional graduate studies in New Testament Studies at the Center for Advanced Theological Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary (CA). I am also a graduate of the College of Prayer. Having served as the Academic Dean and Program Director at Horizon Institute of Los Angeles for several years, I have returned to the pastorate and serve as Pastor of Big Trees Community Bible Church in Arnold, CA.
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