Healthy Self-Focus and Whakapapa


Peter sinking in the Sea
Healthy Self-Focus and Whakapapa
Peter took his eyes off Jesus and started to sink.

Picture courtesy of

Today is where our Healthy Self-Focus study and our Lent Whakapapa study come together.

It is no use for us to examine self, and tinker with it in hope of improving it. The thing the Lord wants to do is get rid of it. - Hannah Whitall Smith

Your old nature is determined to hold your attention; it would rather be thought of badly than not at all, because then Satan can use it to remind you of your past. When he does remind him of the cross and his future. But in the process of examining your past and feeling miserable, you will possibly think you are being humble, honest and spiritual. But the only way to handle your fleshly nature is to consign it to the ‘ignore file’ and anchor your attention and expectations exclusively on the Lord. To do this you need a firm foundation in God’s whakapapa, being part of the family of Christ and being able to claim a place in a supportive faith community that teaches the gospel and upholds one another in prayer and discipleship. Those who will help nurture your faith through both support and challenge allowing you to grow into a mature Christian.

King David understood about needing to keep your focus on God. He took his eyes off God and saw Bathsheba bathing, that got him in trouble. He learned the hard way, don't take your eyes off God.

My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare. - Psalm 25:15 (NIV)

Looking at your own ‘clay feet’ (weaknesses and failures), and the ‘snare’ (your old “flesh”) you’re tangled in, won’t free you from the trap. You’ll just end up further entangled. Only God, together with your cooperation, can release you from the trap of the flesh. Keeping your ‘eyes . . . .ever on the Lord’ is the best way to gain victory. David also said:

I am always thinking of the Lord; and because he is so near, I never need to stumble or fall.
Heart, body, and soul are filled with joy. For you will not leave me among the dead; you will not allow your beloved one to rot in the grave. You have let me experience the joys of life and the exquisite pleasures of your own eternal presence. - Psalm 16:8-11

The disciple Peter also learned the hard way, not to take his eyes off Jesus. Brave enough to get out of the boat and walk across the water to Jesus, it was only when he took his eyes off Jesus and fear entered his heart due to the storm, that he started sinking in the water. So your job is simple - although not necessarily easy. Ignore your fleshly cravings and stay focused on Jesus. His job is to transform you with his mighty power!