I recently heard a speaker at a safety event we hosted say one phrase that really stuck with me:
Keep. Your. Eyes. Up.
When I heard this phrase, my mind didn’t go to dark parking lots (even though that’s important) but instead to how single moms have a very real enemy who desperately wants to keep us quiet and our eyes down with distractions. Peter offers this warning: “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).
As believers in Christ, this enemy cannot take away our relationship with God, but he does do everything in his power to distract us. Thankfully, we have a God we can trust to lift our heads and keep our eyes up.
Here are three ways God lifts our eyes during the enemy’s distractions.
1. God keeps our eyes up by removing idols in our lives.
Idols are anything we place as more important than our relationship with Jesus. They are what we look to as our source of identity and happiness. When I’m wrapped up in an idol, my eyes are so fixated that I miss the incredible work God has for me to do. We must identify our idols. Sometimes our idols are obvious problems in our lives that must be completely removed: alcoholism, drugs, pornography, etc. But often idols can be good things that have taken over our focus. For single moms I’ve found this can often be the desire for a new relationship or financial stability. For me? My kids can easily become an idol when I try to revolve my world around them and make their life “comfortable.” Keep your eyes up! Give your idol over to God and trust him.
2. God keeps our eyes up by removing insecurities.
Single parents tend to have a lot to be insecure about. The reality is, our family doesn’t look like other families or what we thought our family would look like. The temptation to overcompensate and try to prove our worth to others (or even to ourselves) can run us ragged, draining us and making us focused on ourselves. Keep your eyes up! Your value is found in Christ and not what your family structure looks like. Give these over to God and trust him.
3. God keeps our eyes up by removing shame.
Our enemy loves to make us feel ashamed. He wants the weight of divorce or unplanned pregnancy or the death of a spouse to push us down and cause us to curl up and hide. We do NOT have a God of shame. Does God convict us of sin? Yes, and he is so good and right to do that. But does he require that we wallow in it and feel less then because of it? No. He loves you even in the midst of whatever mess you are in. Most of you are in a circumstance that was completely out of your control and yet that temptation to feel shame kicks in. Eyes up! Give these over to God and trust him.
Let us be women who lift our eyes and are ready to see what God has for us. Our enemy knows the value we still hold and the impact we as single parents can make for the Kingdom. Don’t fall prey to his schemes. Eyes up and boldy proclaim the love of Christ.