Get your eyes up girl!

I love hiking!  The view of the desert landscape, the sounds of frightened lizards as they run across the trail and hide behind a rock, the smell of the fresh air especially after a much needed rain.  I love not caring what I’m wearing or if I have my makeup on just right.  Also, people generally seem to be happier and friendlier as well offering a “good day” and a smile as they pass by.  They don’t judge you if you are going up or coming down.  They are on their own track and at their own pace.  In the end though everyone is on the same mission, to reach the summit!   When you first start hiking you constantly think of yourself and the trail. You don’t take your eyes off of yourself, off of your own two feet.  This is especially true if you just started hiking a new mountain or a new trail.  Walking on the trail there are so many rocks, dips, holes that can trip us up.  It is our natural tendency to look down.  The more we go on the trail, the more we learn about it. We learn which ways to go, what ways to avoid or practice more and where the loose and unstable rocks are that will no doubt trip us up.  

 So my question to you is what are your loose rocks? What are your stumbling blocks on your trail?  Is it anger? Self image? Jealously? Are you always comparing yourself to others on social media? No matter what it is they all start with a thought.  Your thoughts are those little rocks along the path that make you stumble. Some just trip you up momentarily, but given enough time to sit and simmer in your mind they can make you fall hard.  They can distract you from your summit. What’s our summit as Christians?  It is to be more and more like Christ every day.  We cannot fully reach our summit until we start to learn our trail.  As you hike, the purpose of your trail is to reflect more and more of Christ’s character. In order to do this you must first learn what can cause you to fall. You must learn the trail. You must learn yourself.  Your ways, your mistakes, your habits so that you can avoid them.  If the same spots keep causing us to fall we can never get to a point to truly take our eyes off of ourselves. Sin is sneaky like that.  It starts out as a whispering thought and if we aren’t careful we let it simmer, cook, and take hold in our mind and eventually in our hearts.  We must analyze each thought that passes through our minds and compare it to what God says and His promises for us.  Romans 12:2 states, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” If our thoughts do not align with His we must discard it quickly and remember what the Lord says.  “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” Philippians 4:8. As you start to redirect your thoughts and learn you’re own trail you can start taking your eyes off of your own two feet. You will be aware of what loose rocks there are and how to avoid them.  You will start taking your eyes off of yourself and start looking up.  Up to truly love others as Jesus did.  Up to God to learn about Him and His awe-inspiring character.  Learn your path to the summit. Learn the areas you need to grow one step at a time. Get your eyes up girl! Up to Jesus!  Ephesians 4:22-24 “You were taught, with regards to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”

- S

Shannon Hoffpauir