Shortsighted

“So teach us to number our days, that we may present to You a heart of wisdom.”——Psalm 90:12

======================================

We live in an age where everything is close to instantaneous.  News and information can be received at the moment it begins to happen.  This hasn’t been the case throughout most of history, but with the rise of new technology, things that once seemed impossible even 20 years ago, are now are possible.

It amazes me at times when I think about how we are able to communicate.  We have smartphones that are able to send messages, voice, and video to basically anyone around the world.  And with a growing network able to receive these communications, there is less and less “dead” space.  I have personally experienced being in different parts of the world and was able to video call and send text messages to share the experience.  Incredible.

But I think we all know that with all the positives with technology, there are also many pitfalls that go along with it as well.

One among many, is having short attention spans.  This has lead to most people only caring about what is right in front of them and losing sight of what lies beyond.  This shortsightedness has created a mentality of choosing to do things without looking at the long term consequences.  And among the younger generation this has led them to merely look at pleasure without the reality of the impact of their future.

Take for example the acronym, “YOLO”.  You may not be familiar with this term; I wasn’t when I first heard it.  YOLO has been a sort of mantra that many have come embrace.  YOLO simply means, “You Only Live Once”.  Those who use this term use it as a means of approval to do whatever they would like to do.  This may mean doing things that might be risky, unsafe, or even sketchy by others.  It might be trying something you might not otherwise think to do.  What is behind this is a call to push beyond the boundaries without caring what anyone thinks or the results; good or bad.

Another example is the use of social media.  There is much to be said in this area, but in a lot of ways social media has had really damaging results in our world.  Without really considering what is being shared, many lives are being shattered.  Even with the ability to delete some of what is posted, as soon as the message is sent, it is out in cyberspace for many to see and pass on.

When it comes to the decisions being made, it is difficult for all of us to be able to take a step back and think through the ramifications.  And it is even more difficult when we are constantly confronted by deciding things in a flash.  Therefore, it is imperative that we have the right perspective in our lives if we are going to make godly decisions.

As believers we must resist the urge to conform to the world’s thinking when it comes to our decision making.  Instead of choosing the easier or seemingly more satisfying road, often times the most obedient road is the more difficult road.  This becomes especially true when we are confronted with opportunities that can look fulfilling in the short term.  But when divorce rates continue to increase, people are living together out of wedlock, having kids and then being dragged through broken homes, finances and debt being a mess, and so many other things, it isn’t a wonder that people are seeking to find comfort in things that can bring momentary gratification.

Without continually walking with the Lord and keeping a Biblical perspective in our lives, we will never be able to see beyond the moment and understand the impact going forward.  Even though we may not know exactly what lies ahead, it is good for us find ourselves obedient to the Lord here and now.  If we begin to live our lives in a way that honors God in all areas of our lives, then we will be less likely to seek fulfillment in the things that we think will bring us happiness outside of God’s Will.  And if we do fall short of God’s Way and sin against Him and others, we must find ourselves quickly confessing and repenting of those things.  This may not mean that the consequences of our actions change, but we will seek to go forward by doing what is right before the Lord.

We must live in the moment, but with an eye on the future.

If we begin to live in prayerful discernment each day, we will be far more careful in falling into the traps being shortsighted.  We will see that with each decision, big or small, it will be made with how to bring God the most glory.  Our focus must be on being good stewards of all that God has blessed us with and seek to help one another when we are confronted with difficult situations.

My hope and prayer is that we would re-examine how we are all affected by becoming shortsighted.  And in doing so, that we would begin and continue to adjust our thinking about the long term impact our decisions have in our lives.  May the Lord help us to not get caught up in just going with the moment, but seek to present to Him a heart that is truly wise.