Sunday

Check Your Blind Spot -- Seeing Sin Before It Wrecks Your Life

The guy in the SUV never saw it coming. But I did. 

Stopped in traffic in the far right lane on a busy 4-lane highway, I did what my driving instructor had taught me – put your left turn signal on, watch in your side mirror for traffic in the next lane to clear, check your blind spot, then prepare to pull out. 

The guy behind me did the same – minus one very important step – he failed to check his blind spot. The bright green porta-potty truck (complete with a sloshing tank and a porta-potty strapped to the back) had almost passed him when he pulled into its path. I watched it happen in my mirror like a slow-motion crash scene in a low budget Hollywood movie. There was nothing I could do to stop it. 

“No. No. NO!” 

CRASH! 

The forward motion of the truck knocked the SUV back into its lane and into the rear of my Toyota. In three long seconds it was over. Two cars totaled and nary a scratch on the porta-potty truck. We were all thankful it didn’t lose its load. 

Later the driver of the SUV told the police officer, “I guess it was in my blind spot. I never saw it coming.” Two weeks later, the driver’s words still ring in my ears. Instead of thinking about wrecked cars, however, I’m thinking about wrecked lives, because we all have blind spots. 

By definition a blind spot is an area where a person's view is obstructed. Collins dictionary gets more specific. “If you say that someone has a blind spot about something, you mean that they seem to be unable to understand it or to see how important it is.” 

Not limited to the scene in a rear-view mirror, our blind spots pop up in different areas of our lives. They limit our ability to make right choices and endanger our physical, financial, relational, and spiritual lives. 

Some of us have blind spots concerning our physical health. We fail to see (or choose to ignore) our increasing weight, decrease in stamina, or rising blood sugar or cholesterol numbers. We slip into poor eating habits or turn a blind eye to the value of exercise. Short-term medication to get us through a bad spot becomes long-term therapy with no exit plan. 

Others suffer because of financial blind spots. We ignore mounting debt and pay only the minimum while continuing to borrow money. Or turn our backs on the wise principles of saving and charitable giving. Or continue to “loan” money to people who never pay it back. 

Sometimes we struggle with relational blind spots. We fail to see the needs of others and find ourselves in a crisis we never saw coming. Or continue to do the same thing the same way and wonder why we don’t get different results. We lose our ability to distinguish between helping and enabling, or we give others too much power, allowing them to make us feel inadequate, inferior, and insecure. 

Finally, our spiritual life is one of the greatest areas for blind spots. Relationships become idolatrous when they take first place over our relationship with God. Complacency and laziness dull our desire to pray, serve, and worship, leaving our spiritual lives lukewarm and ineffective. Society’s siren song of love apart from truth causes us to compromise on foundational biblical principles. 

It’s not enough just to be aware of blind spots, we have to take action against them.

Here are three ways we can protect ourselves: 

1. Remain vigilant. Never think you’re too healthy, financially smart, relationally sound, or spiritually mature to be blinded. 

“So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall!” (1 Cor. 10:12). 

2. Put safeguards in place. Alone or with your spouse, establish ground rules for the important areas of your life. Decide in advance how you’re going to act in different scenarios. God always promises to make a way to escape temptation, but even better than escaping is is avoiding it all together. 

“But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts” (Romans 13:14). 

3. Maintain good habits. What we do regularly charts the course of our lives, good or bad. Here are some of mine: Physical – I exercise for at least 30 minutes a day. Financial – we pay off our credit card every month. Relational – we've agreed divorce is not an option. We do what it takes to work it out. Spiritual – I make church attendance and daily Bible reading a priority. 

“No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it” (Heb. 12:11). 

If the driver who hit me had been watching his blind spot, he wouldn’t have wrecked his car or mine. If we stay alert for physical, financial, relational, and spiritual blind spots, we can avoid wrecking our lives and the lives of those around us. Even better, we can honor and glorify God and point others to him. 

Now it’s your turn. Which blind spots to you struggle with the most? How do you guard against them? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.



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