3 Barriers that Cloud Our Vision
What is it that keeps me from seeing clearly? Why is it that sometimes I can’t see the root of them problem in my life?
(Mark 8:13) So he got back into the boat and left them, and he crossed to the other side of the lake. 14But the disciples had forgotten to bring any food. They had only one loaf of bread with them in the boat. 15As they were crossing the lake, Jesus warned them, “Watch out! Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and of Herod.” 16At this they began to argue with each other because they hadn’t brought any bread. 17Jesus knew what they were saying, so he said, “Why are you arguing about having no bread? Don’t you know or understand even yet? Are your hearts too hard to take it in? 18‘You have eyes—can’t you see? You have ears—can’t you hear?’ Don’t you remember anything at all? 19When I fed the 5,000 with five loaves of bread, how many baskets of leftovers did you pick up afterward?” “Twelve,” they said. 20“And when I fed the 4,000 with seven loaves, how many large baskets of leftovers did you pick up?” “Seven,” they said. 21“Don’t you understand yet?” he asked them.
In this passage Jesus points out three barriers that cause us to not be able to see clearly.
1. My Pride
When I am prideful, I can’t see what God is doing in my life.
Jesus says,“Watch out for the yeast of the Pharisees.” In the Bible “yeast” is often a metaphor for pride and arrogance. That makes sense. Why? What does yeast do? When you put yeast in dough what does it do? It puffs it up and if you put in too much it blows it up. It expands stuff. It’s like pride; it gets bigger and bigger. That’s what pride is in your life. You don’t have to have a lot of pride. Just a little pride will get you in all kinds of problems. Just a little pride will take over quickly.
So when I am filled with pride, when I have the yeast of the Pharisees, guess what? I can’t see life clearly.
2. short term thinking
When I am only focusing on the here and now and not what God wants to do in my life long term. When I’m thinking about current comfort rather than long-term character. When I’m thinking about my success not my surrendering to God. When I’m thinking about enjoying now instead of preparing for eternity, I’m going to miss what God wants to do in my life.
Short term thinking causes us to not see how God’s working in our lives. You can’t see his long-range plans for your character, because you’re just thinking about your comfort.
3. short term memory
Here’s an example where Jesus has to remind the disciples of a couple things that’s just happened. He reminds them of two miracles. Remember they’re all worried about bread. Jesus says, “Guys, who’s in the boat with you? I am the guy who just took a few loaves and fed five thousand people. I’m the guy who just took a few other loaves and fed four thousand people. And you’re worried about lunch? Hello! What are you thinking? I am with you. You’re not going to get hungry if you hang around me.”
How quickly we forget! Isn’t that true? God does something good in our lives, he answers a prayer, he bails us out, he helps us with a miracle. Then the next time a problem comes along we act as if it never happened.
When I can’t remember past blessings, I start fearing the future. I stop thinking God will do it again, because I’m not even thinking he did it the first time. When I have short term memory I start worrying unnecessarily about tomorrow.