Thanks to an expanded use of sunflower seeds, the sunflower has become a sizeable crop in the West Texas area. One driving through sees an interesting sight. Not only are the fields comprising acres and acres of the yellow flowers with a black center beautiful, they are all exactly the same height! It looks as if one could walk across the yellow fields. The flowers all are pointed toward the sun. The entire field faces toward the east as the sun rises. As it moves across the sky, every flower follows the sun’s course until, by the time the sun sets, the flowers have moved in an arc of 180 degrees. This natural phenomenon, perhaps, has a spiritual counterpart.
In the Book of Hebrews we read, “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Chapter 12, verses 1,2.
The Apostle, Peter, was doing fine walking on the water as long as he kept his eyes on the Savior, but when he ceased looking at Jesus and, instead, focused his attention on the boisterous waves, he began to sink. It was only when he re-fastened his gaze again upon Christ that he was saved from a death of drowning. Matt. 14:22-32.
Fastening our eyes on Christ allows us to follow the admonition of this apostle who at a later time said, “…Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that we should walk in His steps.” I Peter 2:21. Following the Savior can be a difficult task with all the other things in the world that are screaming for our attention. It’s only when we determine to keep our eyes on Christ that we can imitate those beautiful characteristics that we see in Him and run with patience the race which is set before us. The tenacity with which the sunflower fastens its gaze on the sun, should be imitated by the Christian who, with the same single mindedness, fastens his attention on the Son.
In 1805 surveyors in the Franconia Notch area in the mountains of New Hampshire told of a rocky profile in the mountains that appeared to be a human face. It became known as, “The Old Man of the Mountain” and inspired much comment and a good amount of literature. Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote a short story about it called, “The Great Stone Face.” The hero of the story, Ernest, grew up at the base of the mountain and daily would stare at the stone face. As he matured, people began to see that he looked like the Old Man of the Mountain that had become such an important of his life! In the same manner, when Christ becomes a daily part of our life and when we constantly look unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith, we begin to look more and more like Him. When this happens, we truly become a Christian, not just in name but also in fact!