And Elisha prayed, ‘O Lord, open his eyes so he may see.’ Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. 2 Kings 6:17

A few months ago my daughter gave me some good advice. She knows I suffer from motion sickness and told me if I was feeling unwell while travelling I should either shut my eyes or focus on the movement. Research has shown that motion sickness is caused by the brain receiving conflicting information from the eyes and ears. (The ears control our sense of balance.) Shutting my eyes removes the conflict. I have found this remedy quite successful.

It suggests an interesting spiritual parallel. Sometimes our eyes don’t always give us an accurate picture or all the information we need. In this passage from Kings, the city where Elisha was staying was surrounded by enemy forces. The servant reported this to Elisha. “‘Don’t be afraid,’ the prophet answered. ‘Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.’” God opened the servant’s eyes and he saw God’s protection.

Our physical senses can deceive us. Even pilots are taught to rely on their instruments and not trust their senses. Therefore we ‘shut our eyes’ to the way we feel about ourselves and believe God’s true picture of ourselves and our world. God sees us as his chosen people, holy and dearly loved (Colossians 3:12); as saints (Ephesians 1:1); and as salt and light (Matthew 5:13-14). God sees our world as temporary and passing away (2 Corinthians 4:18, 1 Corinthians 7:27). This is the true picture all else is a false impression and can cause spiritual motion sickness.