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Thursday, January 29, 2015

Amish youth on way to youth meeting
Snowy winter scene in Lancaster County, PA

"Pure Eyes"

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"Your eyes are too pure to look on evil" (Habakkuk 1:13a). Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong"
(1 Corinthians 16:13). “But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people” (Ephesians 5:3). "Keep yourself pure" (1 Timothy 5:22). "All who have this hope in Him purify themselves, just as He is pure" (1 John 3:3).

For many years we've selected music to supplement our daily encouragement messages using spiritual songs available as a link to a YouTube video. Perhaps I mistakenly changed a setting or perhaps it's a recent change to YouTube's formatting but now the song I select is followed by songs that may or may not be related.  It seems that YouTube doesn't prefer my style of music nor does it discern my preference of content!

Yesterday a song played that I had chosen and I walked out of the room. Upon re-entering I heard a different song playing with content
that bristled my spirit. It's not one I would choose to listen to in my home, the car or elsewhere.

"O be careful little eyes what you see" is a little chorus many of us recall singing in our childhood. In fact some of you could sing the words below even though you may have not heard the song for many years. Though written for young children it also has a very grownup message.

O be careful little eyes what you see
O be careful little eyes what you see
There's a Father up above
And He's looking down in love
So, be careful little eyes what you see

The song has various similar expressions:
Oh, be careful little ears what you hear
Oh, be careful little hands, what you do
Oh, be careful little mouth, what you say
Oh, be careful little mind what you think

We consider the temptations common to children in their childhood. This is also a very simple song with a timeless message for people of all ages. It's a song to tuck away in our hearts as children that will continue to influence us in our adulthood when tempted to listen or repeat gossip, to be profane or lie. We're reminded to use our hands in helping others rather than hurting or stealing from them. And it also includes the message of keeping our minds pure, which guides our actions, both positive and negative.

But now consider the flood of temptations assaulting the eyes, ears and minds of both children and adults. Before the accessibility to smart phones, computers, and many such devices parents were more informed and able to observe their children's "wanderings". Remember the days when there was one telephone shared by all in a common place where you knew who your child was talking to. Now it's nearly impossible to know what your child accesses in the privacy of his or her room, school, library, etc.

Habakkuk is one of the lesser-known
Old Testament prophets. In fact he has one of the shortest books with only three chapters. In today's first verse he makes a timeless observation about the unchangeable God.

"Your eyes are too pure to look on evil." That's a great verse to ponder. The specific evil that Habakkuk had in mind is likely different than the evil today but the same principle applies.  Today evil takes on many forms and is as prevalent today as it was in Habakkuk's time. It certainly is far more accessible due to our technological age.  Evil abounds but I refuse to process that dark thought without following up with the reassuring Scripture, "Where sin abounds grace doth much more abound." Hallelujah!

If we say that we love God we must dutifully walk in integrity and moral purity. 

Jerry Bridges writes, "Our minds are mental greenhouses where unlawful thoughts, once planted, are nurtured and watered before being transplanted into the real world of unlawful actions... These actions are savored in the mind long before they are enjoyed in reality. The thought life, then, is our first line of defense in the battle of self-control."

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Father, we ask for clean hands, a pure mind, and a steadfast heart that follows hard after You. Temptation regularly knocks at our door, but with Your Holy Spirit residing within, we have the will and desire to turn it away.  We don't want even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, or anything considered improper for Your holy people. It is through Christ that we can live such a life above reproach and honoring to You. Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"O Be Careful Little Eyes What You See"  Video   Cedarmont Kids

"Slow Fade"  Video  Casting Crowns  A powerful song which actually incorporates the words "O Be Careful Little Eyes What You See"

"Guard Your Heart" Video  Steve Green

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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