Focus on Jesus
Preached in ___ on ___
Photo out of focus: Anytime I go on a trip or Vacation I like to bring my Camera. I love to take photos of the people and Places. I sometimes take too many. But I love to get home and look at the pictures and reminisce about the trip and about the people. I am in such a hurry to see the pictures that I can’t wait the 2 or 3 days it takes to process the film so I take it to the 1 hour photo shop. Well actually I no longer even have to wait that long now since we bought a Digital camera. But I don’t know if it is just me but when I use to open up the pictures and look through There was always at least one photo that was fuzzy and blurry It was usually so bad that I couldn't make out what the picture was, Has that ever happened to any of you? It used to happen to me all the time.
This World is out of focus: It’s not only Photos that can be blurry and out of focus. Our life can be as well. Has anyone heard the news about those two guys who at one time were running around shooting random people? Does anyone remember the Guy who killed himself after the Enron scandal?
I often sit and think “what are these people thinking”. I ask why? Then it occurs to me. If we believe that life Evolved from nothing, then we no longer believe in a right or a wrong. If we believe the TV and the Media that no matter what we do things will turn out right as long as we have a Pepsi in our hands. If we think money can answer all our problems, then we are seeing life in a blurry out of focused way.
1. The World Focus
a. Sex: You see this world tells us to focus on Sex, Sex sells and when we turn on the TV we see sex. I don’t know how many times I’ve looked over at Shannon as we were watching a show and said what was this commercial about or why did they need to put a young half naked guy or girl on. No matter what’s being sold, from a candy bar to a Car. Even if it doesn’t fit the commercial they use sex to sell things. And we are told that perversions of sex are just other ways of having it. You know sex between a married man and women is good and God set that up. But Sex outside of marriage is wrong and it’s wrong because it’s against what God has set up for sex. But again if our attention is on sex the reality of what is true is blurred. When our reality is blurred we look and say sex is from God but then don’t follow what He set up for sex and we see children having children and these children growing up in homes with no father or no mother or being raised in a dangerous environment.
b. Money: So Sex is not where we should put our attention or where we should focus. What about money? This world tells us to Focus on Money. Money will solve all your problems. Get lots of money. It doesn't really matter how you get that money as long as you’re rich. Maybe that’s what the man who killed himself, after the Enron scandal believed. Or what happens to the man who is a great CEO of a company making thousands or even millions of dollars and then finds out that he has Cancer. Life is out of focus when we place our attention on the things of this world. We can do no better than to stumble and fall.
c. Self: But if sex and money are not where our focus should be what about focusing on ourselves. Focus in ward. Well as you can imagine the world has that as a life focusing philosophy as well. If I only come to know myself and feel good about myself then all will be well and then I can help others. If I treat myself well then my life will be great. And we see the results of this type of thinking when we see a father of three small children who leaves his family to make himself feel better or to find himself. I don’t know about you but that doesn’t sound right.
2. What should we focus on?
a. Our brother Ian about a month ago told us the three things in life that we need. Do you remember? Christ, Christ, Christ. The Bible, The word of almighty God, tells us that we need to focus on Jesus. We need to stay alert and focused on Christ. But Why? Well first of all He is perfect, Sinless. There is no other person on earth past present or future who is perfect only Jesus holds that title. If you’re looking for a role model you need not look any further than Jesus. Role models: Don’t look to the movie stars or sports stars as your role model or the person you look up to or focus on. Why? They will let you down. There not perfect and they sin just like the rest of us. Let me read to you a little bit of an article it’s from July of 2002. It’s about a basketball player, Iverson surrenders.
i. Wednesday, July 17, 2002 THE ASSOCIATED PRESS: PHILADELPHIA -- Allen Iverson was arraigned yesterday on charges he stormed into a cousin's apartment with a gun and threatened two men while looking for his wife. He was released on $10,000 bond after 11 hours in custody. Wearing a white T-shirt, a haggard-looking Iverson appeared in court via closed circuit TV as he sat in a detention block at police headquarters. No plea was entered for the 76ers' star guard, although Iverson's lawyer told the court his client would plead innocent.
The brief hearing came after a long day behind bars for Iverson, who surrendered about 5:30 a.m. to face charges of assault, making threats and carrying a gun without a license. The charges carry a maximum sentence of more than 50 years, although lawyers not involved in the case said he is unlikely to serve jail time even if convicted.
b. Christians we don’t find our role models on TV or on the radio we look to Christ because He will never let us down. You will never find a bad side of Christ. He will never let you down. Trust Him.
c. But He is not only perfect; sinless He gave up His life to save every person on this earth.
i. Rom 5:6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.
d. That’s us. He came and died for our sins. We walked away from God. We have sinned and in doing that we have all turned our backs on God. But through Jesus we can have a special relationship with God. We have all sinned and have fallen short in life but Jesus came to the earth and through his death and resurrection has given us life eternal and fixed our relationship with God. Where should we put our focus? We should focus on the sinless Son of God. Jesus said it himself in:
i. John 14:6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life.
e. Where better to put your attention then on the TRUTH the WAY the one who is LIFE. If the Word of God from beginning to end talks about Jesus then where else should our focus be then on him. And when we are focused on him life is in Focus. No longer is our life out of focus like the photograph. But it’s not enough to just focus on Jesus once a week. Be aware and awake focusing on Jesus. Constantly focusing and being aware.
i. 1 Peter 5:8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
f. Be alert not just on Sunday but every day. Satan doesn’t care what we focus on as long as it’s not Christ. He can turn our good intentions bad. You want to focus on how well we sang this morning or who bad we sang. Satan doesn’t care about that He would rather you focus on that. Are you having trouble in life are the storms raging in your life? Satan would like you to focus on that. Anything to keep you from being focused on Jesus Christ. Because we see life in a clear way when we focus on Jesus. Keeping our attention on Christ is important because the Devil is looking for those who are not paying attention who are not focused.
i. Peter on the water Matthew 14:25-30: During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. "It's a ghost," they said, and cried out in fear. 27But Jesus immediately said to them: "Take courage! It is I. Don't be afraid." 28"Lord, if it's you," Peter replied, "tell me to come to you on the water." 29"Come," he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, "Lord, save me!"
g. The disciples are off in the middle of a lake and there is a storm or at least some kind of rough seas. Jesus is on the shore and He decides to cross the lake and starts walking on the water. The disciples see Jesus walking on the water and they all think they’re seeing a ghost but Jesus calls out to them and says don’t be afraid it’s Me. It’s Jesus. Then Peter cries out to Jesus if it is you tell me to come to you on the water. Jesus tells Peter to come to him. So Peter jumps out of the boat and starts walking on the water. Can you imagine walking on the water getting closer to Jesus with every step? But Peter loses his focus He looks around and he sees all these waves the sky is dark and maybe lightning can be seen every so often the wind is blowing and Peter no longer focused on Jesus starts to sink. If we stay focused on Jesus we can make it through the tough times but if we allow the storms in our lives to take our focus off Jesus we will begin to sink. When trouble comes your way stay focused on Jesus. When life is going great focus on Jesus.
h. Again it doesn’t matter what you focus on in life if you are not focused on Jesus life will be out of Focus.
3. How do we focus on Jesus?
a. We read the scriptures and learn all about Christ and see that He never let anyone down. From that we learn that He will never let us down, if we stay focused on Him.
b. Pray every day and keep the lines of communication open with God.
c. Learn to Love and lean on your brothers and sisters. Help others and allow others to help you. These are some of the ways we can focus on Jesus. Remember the things we do for others we do for Christ even if it’s only a cup of cold water.
This world has all kinds of philosophies and places to put your attention but there is only one man to focus on that brings life into balance and into focus. That’s Christ. Sex is not the answer money is not the answer and focusing on our selves is not the answer. If I have not made myself clear here today let me conclude with this, Brothers, Sisters stay focused on Jesus Christ. He will never leave you or forsake you. Pray with me.