In Pirates of the Caribbean, Captain Jack Sparrow, and at times others too, uses what initially appears to be a broken compass to achieve his goals. Turns out, the compass points to what the holder wants most and not to true north, which means the person holding it must actually know what he wants in order for the compass to be of use.
At one point, the compass spins without fixing in one direction because Jack doesn’t know what he wants. The compass follows the holder’s heart, after all, so if the heart is confused, so too is the compass.
When I lose focus, I feel like I’m trying to follow a compass that spins in circles too. My path gets confused with too many options, and I don’t know which direction to take. Like Jack, I become lost in a vast, unending sea, sort of floating around in aimless frustration.
Lost and Wandering?
“Behold, I go forward but He is not there, and backward, but I cannot perceive Him; when he acts on the left, I cannot behold Him; He turns on the right, I cannot see Him.” (Job 23:8-9)
“The toil of a fool so wearies him that he does not even know how to go to a city.” (Ecclesiastes 10:15)
These Scriptures aptly describe life with a confused focus or “broken compass.” They also help us see why we remain unable to move forward in ways that matter for eternity when our compass spins uncontrollably.
- We never settle on God’s Word, and instead seek solutions elsewhere.
- We think God can’t see us just because we can’t see Him.
- We fail to fix our thoughts on Him and become increasingly confused.
- We get hung up on our ability to understand or figure God out.
- We become overwhelmed by the temporary cares of life this side of Heaven.
Though I stay in that wandering state less than I used too, it still happens way too often. Maybe you feel this same frustration too.
Only when we focus our hearts do we know the right direction to take. But how do we get that focus? Sometimes even more difficult, how do we keep that focus once we obtain it?