The Tragedy of Spiritual Blindness

On March 2, 2003, I was in Tallahassee, FL. to preach a Sunday sermon titled “20/20 Vision.” Just before leaving for church, I sat a moment with a cup of coffee and opened the newspaper. The headline jumped off the page, and I quickly found myself mesmerized as I took in every word of Lost in Plain Sight: “The Legacy of Florida’s Foster Care System.” This article shocked me as it shouted outrage at a system that lost sight of the value of human souls, and questioned who is responsible. What a tragedy to be the responsibility of the state and federal government, and to be both ignored and forgotten. It was more than ironic…I knew it was prophetic, as I glimpsed over at the message outline that was prayerfully prepared 2 weeks earlier. The 1st principle said, “Our Tragedy: Understanding our society’s loss of values, human dignity and moral conviction is due to spiritual blindness.”

How could someone…anyone…you or I lose sight of what’s so valuable? There is nothing stranger today than “the importance of unimportant things; except of course, the unimportance of important things.” Well, that’s it. You lose what you don’t believe is important. If it’s not valuable to you, then it will neither be seen when there, nor be missed when gone. Where and what your treasure is… there your heart’s affection (love and worth-ship) is…there your life’s attention stays. When you think it matters, your appreciation produces a determined pursuit. Job 28 speaks to this amazing yet contradictory point, that man has an almost infinite capacity to overcome insurmountable odds to discover what he deems valuable (mining, engineering and technology feats); but cannot find the lasting riches of wisdom and understanding because they begin with the fear (reverence and worship) of the Lord God.

Do you notice the difference of value produces both a different point of view and pursuit? The Bible speaks to this throughout the Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon. Is your ultimate value the things of the earth, your efforts and way; or is it to know and worship God…and learn HIS perspective and ways? The first one produces a life of futility (carnality and religion), while the other makes a life of fulfillment. How strange to choose futility over fulfillment, to choose death over life…materialism over spiritual reality…but I see people do it all the time.

In our age of information and day of supposed unequalled education, our blindness to spiritual realities and inability to accurately assess the reasons for our cultural crises has reached epidemic proportions. It ought to be clear by now that we can not educate our way out of something we believed and behaved our way into! The catastrophic effects of denying spiritual and scriptural truths are now plaguing every segment of society. When you take away the supernatural, what remains is the unnatural. When you stop caring for God, you will stop caring for the image of God –your fellow man.

I believe most of the troubles of our time are traceable to the root of spiritual blindness. I am utterly convinced that: 1) There is nothing more important than the spiritual realm. 2) There is nothing more essential or adventurous than faith and family. 3) And, there is nothing more vast and valuable than a human soul. Jude Law’s opening line in the movie “All The King’s Men” applies here, “To find something, anything...a great truth or a lost pair of glasses, you must first believe there would be some advantage in finding it.” If you “see” it (the value, advantage, worth), you will seek it! Remember, the Holy Spirit is our advantage (Jn.16:7). Isn’t it time we set out once again for the discovery and recovery of the spiritual things that matter most.

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