As we already learned, the iris controls how much light enters the eye by automatically increasing and decreasing the size of the pupil opening, based on brightness, darkness, and distance. But the iris is not the only thing that affects the size of a person’s pupil. Another factor—emotional response—can also adjust the size of a person’s pupil.
For example, if a person is emotionally attracted to (or covets) something that they see, their pupils will become larger. This known fact has been used as a competitive advantage by people like poker players, and salespeople.
Furthermore, in experiments where people have been asked to fix their eyes on a single object, sophisticated measuring devices have detected a multitude of tiny movements away from the object, and then back towards it. Even when we think we are fixing our eyes on something, we’re being distracted by everything in our peripherals.
The writer of Hebrews challenges us to fix our eyes on Jesus, the perfecter, and pioneer of our faith. We need the Spirit to help us in doing this, knowing the enemy is seeking a moment to unhinge our eyes from Jesus.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (Hebrews 12:1-3, NIV)
You might think you can multitask when it comes to your sight, but you can’t. Your eyes make rapid shifts as you view near and distant objects; in the science world, this is called accommodation.
The fact of the matter is — you can’t focus on more than one thing at a time. Don’t believe it? Here’s a simple experiment: Hold your hand about one foot in front of your face and examine how many lines are on your fingers. Now, with your hand still in front of your face, look at a distant object across the room. While looking at the distant object in focus, count the number of lines on your fingers again. You can’t.
Such is a parallel with our daily lives; multitasking is a myth when it comes to giving something our full attention to detail. Here are a few examples:
Focus on what actually matters. Stop being distracted by the rest.
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. (Romans 8:5)
William James (January 11, 1842–August 26, 1910), a pioneering psychologist noted:
“Millions of items of the outward order are present to my senses which never properly enter into my experience. Why? Because they have no interest for me. My experience is what I agree to attend to. Only those items which I notice shape my mind — without selective interest, experience is an utter chaos.” [The Principles of Psychology, Vol. 1 - Published, June 1950]
So, the question then becomes, “What (or who) have we agreed to notice and attach our experiences to?” And, “What are the things that we that aren’t noticing because we lack interest in them?” I would argue that there are plenty of amazing things (including people) that we’re not noticing because we haven’t aligned our life properly.
An artist draws a few lines on a canvas and the viewer sees the whole face. Another artist paints a snow-covered landscape with beautiful pine trees in the foreground and a bunch of green dots in the background; the viewer perceives an entire forest. The reason this is so is that our brain is trained to fill in the gaps. We see something that we recognize—a series of patterns or things that are familiar to us, and we assume the existence of what goes in the gaps.
Such is the case with God. Everything we see rightfully assumes an intelligent designer: your DNA and the fact that you’re completely unique, your eyes and the way you see, your ears and way you hear, your nose and your sense of smell, your skin and the ability to feel, your organs and your ability to live. But society, not science, has pushed back at the notion of God. To accept an intelligent designer (God) would mean that man is not in control, God is. And for many, that is an unearthing thought that has far too many personal consequences. Science has done an incredible job revealing the intricacies of how some of God’s creations work, and if the results have revealed one major theme, it’s this: nothing is random. Everything is beautifully and miraculously designed, including you.
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the Light of life.” (John 8:12)
Sometimes when I’m taking a photo, I’ll use what’s commonly referred to as a polarization filter. The reason I’ll use this is that I want to reduce the glare coming off of an object, like a leaf or the water.
The way polarization works is similar to how adjusting window blinds will stop a certain amount of light from entering your home. With a polarized lens or polarized sunglasses, the polarization does a similar thing, dividing and blocking a certain frequency (wave angle) of light from entering your eyes.
Similarly, many of us have become polarized people—in that we’ve blocked out much of the Light (John 8:12) and ignored (filtered out) many of God’s instructions to us. Jesus says in Luke 6:46, “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you?”
It may be true that we have adjusted our polarized glasses to see the world how we want to see it, but unless we are willing to see all of the Light for who He (Jesus) is, we are simply polarizing the world into something that it’s not.
Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked. (1 John 2:4-6)
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If you were dying and you had one last chance to talk with the people that matter most to you, what would you say? If everything was on the line, and nothing was left on the table, what wisdom would you impart? My name is Ray Majoran, and this book is my last lecture.
Do we see the amazing beauty in the things that God has created, the people He's brought into our lives, the situations He's put us in? Or do we live in a bubble, oblivious to His amazing wonder happening all around us? unOblivious is a 160-page photo-essay that helps answer that question.