The first part of this article looked at spiritual nearsightedness, where we get caught up in the day-to-day noise of this world, but forget to invest in things with eternal significance.
The second case is farsightedness, or “hyperopia”. Even after I reached a certain age, where my vision abruptly changed, I don’t think that I’ve ever been able to see things far away very well.
As the previous section pointed out, it is imperative that we learn from God’s Word about eternal matters, and make sure that we are living in a way that will yield positive results in the (really) long run. Still, while our eternal future with God is a great thing to think about and study, we must look around us from time to time and make sure that we are not squandering the opportunities that we have in this mortal life to live for God.
I’m not aware of any place where Jesus instructed His disciples (including us) to just sit back and wait until He returned, doing nothing except basking in the anticipation of future glory. Instead, there was specific work to be done here on earth. (Yes, Jesus did tell his disciples to wait in Jerusalem before Pentecost, but that was when they were commissioned to change the world!)
Even in a world that is pretty broken (because of the sin of the human race), there is a lot to do. In fact, God provides instructions throughout the Bible on what this should look like in general, and his Holy Spirit gives us more personal direction within that framework. If you’re interested in learning more, I encourage you to start with some recorded lessons of Jesus that start in Matthew 5, and continue from there. The book of James also has a lot of specific instructions, as do many other books of the Bible. Still, no matter which part of it you start reading from, there is no equal to God’s Word, the Bible, for His instruction.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 NIV
While here on earth, we can show God’s love to others, do good for humanity, give Him praise and glory, and so many other things that let us be part of His short- and long-term plans. Let’s be sure that we’re not just marking time until we pass on.
Perhaps you are blessed with great spiritual “sight”, and you see both the immediate opportunities and eternal implications. If so, that’s great. You can be like the spiritual equivalent of Moses, whose physical (and probably spiritual) sight was good to the very end of his lifetime:
Moses was a hundred and twenty years old when he died, yet his eyes were not weak nor his strength gone.
Deuteronomy 34:7 NIV
If, however, you’re like me, and still need some help seeing one or both of these things clearly, I encourage you to daily put on the “corrective lenses” that God has provided: studying the Bible to understand both domains more clearly, engaging in fellowship with others who have gifts for both the temporal and the eternal, and talking (and listening) to God to hear His unfiltered messages about reality – from His timeless perspective.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.