I'm not sure why this is happening to me. What did I do to deserve this torture, this punishment? Why has this image, this vision been placed in my head? That I would be driven insane by its' tauntings? The hauntings? Why, oh why, . . . do I have a Lionel Richie video stuck in my head!?!
Thoughts about today's topic go back several years to a 2009 song by Brandon Heath called Give Me Your Eyes. In that song, Brandon asks God to be able to see things through HIS eyes, not Brandon's own eyes. That was an interesting concept to me, so I began to pray that - that I would be able to see situations as they are being unveiled, to know they are of God and that I am supposed to act in that moment.
An example of that occurred today at church. I was sitting at a table, talking with some teens, when a lady came up behind me and whispered in a prayer request in my ear. Most people, including myself, would probably have said "Sure, I will pray" and then maybe later we'd do that . . . or . . . maybe not. But in that moment, seeing through God's eyes "for just one moment," I asked my friend, "Do you have five minutes? Let's pray right now." And so we stood there in the post-church fellowship area, surrounded by dozens of people, and I prayed over my friend.
I pray for moments like that. To be aware. Not that I hope my friends have trouble, but when they do, that I would see things through God's eyes and to do the things that Jesus would do.
When we don't see things through God's eyes we run the risk of seeing them through OUR own eyes Not the best of lenses. We begin to filter what WE see through the lense of our life's experiences. Again, that's not always a positive thing.
Back in May I wrote a story called Perception. In it I related a short tale of a father and his children and an irate bystander on a bus. The bystander interpreted things through her own eyes and assumed she was seeing an uncaring father and his unruly children, when actually, she was witnessing something else, a grieving father and his inconsolable children coping with the loss of a wife and mother. Did the bystander see that situation through God's eyes or the world's?
I'd like you to watch a video. It features a tender, loving situation as a man prepares a surprise dinner for the love of his life. Yet, when that very special lady comes home, she sees an entirely different picture. She does not see things through all-knowing eyes, but rather, she sees things through her own eyes and she makes an incorrect assumption.
Don't judge too quickly!
Alright. I have delayed the inevitable long enough. Now that you have watched THAT video, here is that Lionel Richie video I promised you. I know you're excited. It features a teacher and a student who he has fallen in love with but is afraid to tell. The student is blind. At the end of the video the student does something rather amazing and then says, "This is how I see you." She was blind but was still able to see. Reminds me of the song Amazing Grace . . . "I once was lost but now I'm found, twas blind but now I see."
Hello by Lionel Richie
How do we see the world? Do we see it through eyes trained and shaped by the world? Or do we see through the perfectly clear lense of God's eyes. Do we pray for things that WE want? Or do we pray for things we know GOD would want?
One last question for you today. If you saw a blind man walking towards a cliff, would you say something to him? If you saw a child playing near a busy highway, would you caution that child or ignore the situation completely? If you saw someone crying in your church, what would you do? Would you ignore someone's pain and pray that someone else might help them? Or would you ACT like Jesus and reach out in compassion during those moments in life when we encounter opportunities to serve our King?
Okay, that was more like four or five questions, but whatever your answers were, one thing is for sure. We will all answer to Jesus for our answers to lifes questions, for what we have done and for the things we have left UN-done.
"So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin." - James 4:17
Father, may we always do what is right in your eyes. May we always see the situations you place before us and may we always be willing to be used by you to be Jesus in the lives of those we meet along our way to You. Amen.