I used to work on a drilling rig back in the early 1980’s. I know, that was a long time ago. One of the processes on the rig was screwing two stands of 30’ long pipe together. In order to screw these two pieces of pipe together, we used a chain. You see if you put the end of one piece of pipe inside the end of another and wrap a chain around it about 4 times, then use a piece of machinery to pull on the chain while a person holds tension on the other end, the chain will grab the pipe and spin it. Thus screwing them together. We called the job ‘throwing chain”. I’m sure that doesn’t make sense, but trust me it works and besides it really isn’t important for you understand how a drilling rig worked 30 years ago.
Now when I was working in the oil field I have to say that safety was not necessarily something we gave a lot of attention to. In this particular case we never wore safety glasses. One day I noticed that I began to have a little irritant in my eye. As my shift went on the irritant seemed to get worse. I flushed the eye with water but just couldn’t seem to get it out. I used eye drops but still it was no help.
That night was miserable. It irritant just got worse and worse. The next day when I woke up, my eye was matted shut. I couldn’t even open it to see. It was time to see the Dr. The doctor found two little slivers of metal – like something off a chain – stuck in my eye.
I recently remembered this account when I was reading Numbers 33:50-56. Moses was speaking to the Children of Israel and telling them what God wanted them to do when they crossed into the promised land. In verse 55 he said this:
“But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then it shall be that those whom you let remain shall be irritants in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall harass you in the land where you dwell.”
Hmmm. Those they let stay will be like irritants in their eyes. You won’t even realize when it happens. Slowly, it will begin to bother you just a little. It will get worse and worse until eventually it will debilitate you, and you will need to see a Doctor.
The solution? Safety glasses. Really. I learned. I need to protect my eyes. God warns us to protect our spiritual eyes. We need our spiritual safety glasses. In the case of the account in Numbers 33 the safety glasses would simply be to drive out all of the enemy from our lives. If you’re like me you have some things in your life that you have been convicted of in the past, but it’s still there. Maybe you even tried to put it out, but somehow it hung on and you just accepted it. Get rid of it! It will be an irritant in your eye. It will be slow but sure. Eventually it will debilitate you. Blind you spiritually. You’ll need a doctor.
“The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!”
Wow. I need spiritual safety glasses. I need to protect my spiritual eyes. They will determine how light or dark my spirit will be.
What else might be my spiritual safety glasses? Hebrews 12:2 says I need to be living this life having my eyes fixed on Jesus. Jesus is my spiritual safety glasses. You see, He is light. Every minute of every day. What does He want in that meeting at work? In that encounter at the grocery store? What does He want me to see when I am surrounded by people at the Little League field? When I am at me desk working alone? Every minute. Focus on Him. Protect my eyes at all costs. They determine the amount of light/darkness in my spirit.