Living With Binoculars

man-looking-through-binoculars-600x360Binoculars are wonderful devices. You put your eyes to the lenses and things become huge! Everything around the edges disappears. The object you’re looking at is all there is to see. It fills your field of vision with details not noticed with the naked eye.

I’ve been thinking about Psalm 34:3.

“O magnify the Lord with me, And let us exalt His name together.”

What does magnifying the Lord look like in your life? It can’t mean “to make bigger” because Christ is already the All Mighty and God of the Universe. He just can’t get any larger in this life or the next.

Merriam-Webster’s collegiate dictionary defines the word “magnify” as meaning, “to cause to be held in greater esteem or respect” or “to increase in significance or intensify.”

Many of us think that binoculars make little things bigger but that’s more the function of a microscope than binoculars. No, binoculars are designed to help make things far away come closer into our perception. So, I have to ask myself the question, “How close is my God? Do I perceive Him as small and far away or close up and larger than life itself?

Looking at the person of Jesus and filling my entire field of vision with Him is indeed living life with binoculars. I can say with David, “Hey, brothers and sisters magnify Christ with me.” Isn’t that what we do when we go to church and worship together?

Travis Jones, the Pastor who leads the Saturday night worship service at our church, opens every service with a simple statement. He says, “Welcome. We are here to make much of Jesus.” Isn’t that the perfect example of magnifying Christ and lifting His name up in praise and worship? It’s looking at our church services through binoculars… all we see is the Lord, God, Almighty.

In Acts 19:17 there’s a description of what effect the church in Ephesus was having on its community. It says,

“…the name of the Lord Jesus was being magnified.”

Wouldn’t it be fantastic if every church looked at Christ with binoculars and lived out the example of magnifying the Lord?

If I ask myself the question, “Do I magnify the Lord?” I have to think about what exactly that means and then, ask myself some hard questions.

Do I see my life as full of Jesus or are there other things crowding Him out of my vision? Maybe my job, my hobbies, my friends, or even my family fills my focus so I can’t see the Lord as the reason I live. When Paul said, “I count everything as junk compared to knowing Jesus.” [my paraphrase of Philippians 3:8] I think he is talking about magnifying Jesus in perspective so that everything else is pushed out of the way. Those other things are not even noticed.

More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,        Philippians 3:8

When illness hits, do I fill my vision with Jesus? When my finances crash, is Christ the only one I look to for relief? When family problems press in on all sides, do I see the Lord as the only solution? Is He the “Big It” in my life? It’s not my money, it’s not my position or reputation, it’s all about the God of the Universe. He’s all I see. He’s all there is. He is the only answer to any question. He is my “close up and personal” focus.

If we would only focus on Christ and allow Him to be magnified every moment of every day, He takes care of all the other aspects of our lives. He provides, He protects, He loves, He guides, and He blesses because He is pleased to be glorified in that manner. Matthew 6:33 says, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. David says this very thing in Psalm 40:16 when he says,

“Let all who seek You rejoice and be glad in You; Let those who love Your salvation say continually, ‘The Lord be magnified!’”

When you were a kid, did you ever look through binoculars backwards – you know, through the wrong side of the lenses? Instead of bringing objects closer it sends them farther away. Isn’t that what too many of us do? We look at The Father, His Son, and The Holy Spirit through the wrong end of our perceptions and instead of allowing Him to fill our lives – close up and personally – we keep Him far, far away, where He’s remote, undemanding, and easy to ignore.

“O magnify the Lord with me, And let us exalt His name together.”

Think about it…

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