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Seeing the Eternal

March 29th, 2018

You only see when you take the time to look.

“The things which are not seen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:18

My thoughts and comments today are about, “seeing the eternal.  

Sight is an incomparable gift, not always given much thought and often taken for granted, until something threatens or lessens your ability. Think about it. So much of everyday life depends upon and is enhanced by your natural ability to see, perceive, and understand. That is also true of your spiritual life. For the Christians at Ephesus, Paul prayed that the, “eyes of your heart may be enlightened that you may know.” Ephesians 1:18 NIV. Paul also wrote, “And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, Who is the Spirit.” 2 Corinthians 3:18 NIV.

Too much of life is spent looking, often without taking the time to see with understanding. That would describe me in an art gallery or museum. I have wandered through art museums in San Antonio, London, East Berlin, Turkey, and even the world famous Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, as well as the Musee du Louvre and Musee d’Orsay in Paris. How’s that for name dropping? Impressed yet? You need not be impressed. In each instance, I was more a tourist than a student of great art.

In contrast to my casual perusal, I observed a young art student sitting, studiously examining every aspect of the the artist’s masterpiece, and faithfully sketching the painting that I had just glanced at for the briefest of  moments. I admired, and then moved on. I looked. The art student looked, studied, considered, and saw what I did not take the time to see. I looked at the painting in general. She studied the masterful strokes of the artist’s brush with admiration. I lacked the interest and skills for the priceless work of art to fully appreciate the masterpiece before me.

Maybe this is true in life and love; until you look with your heart, you cannot fully see with your eyes. I’ve heard it said, “Love is blind!” Instead, I suggest that love sees more than another’s casual observation ever will. Some look at the Bible and the God it reveals, and see only His demanding standards, without seeing His selfless compassion, sacrificial gift, and sufficient grace. Until you look with your heart, you will not see what is plainly there to see that God loves you; He really does.

I find this to be true as well. If you’re not looking at all, you’re not likely to see what you need to see. Look for God in your everyday life. Look around you for His goodness in and from yourself and others. God appeared at the moment Abraham needed assurance of his future. Read Genesis 18:1-3 NIV. Are you at one of those moments? He is there; open your heart. “Abraham looked and saw . .” Genesis 22:4 NIV. Those few words suggest something that is of interest and for consideration. I know that the phrase, “looked up and saw,” could be merely an idiom of Hebrew or Elizabethan English for emphasis. Yet I am intrigued for this reason. Those simple words describe a bit of Abraham’s recurring experience of God. And they should describe your attitude of desire for spiritual life and growth.

Abraham’s Godly curiosity and spiritual sensitivity demonstrate the price and place of being a disciple. The price is sacrifice. Read Genesis 22:4-8 NIV. Spiritual life is no casual stroll. There is discipline and commitment required. With sacrifice in hand, you meet and know God. A  cherished friend often reminded me, and himself, “If it doesn’t cost you something, it is not ministry.” Abraham, “looked up and saw,” God’s provision that comes through obedience. Read Genesis 22:13-14 NIV.

You will see what you most need to see when you are where God wants you to be. God invites you to meet Him in a place where you can know Him more fully, love Him sincerely, and enjoy Him completely.”While we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:18 NKJV. Change your focus and you redirect your life.

Today I pray for you to cultivate a heart for God with eyes to see the wonder He is.

Christian Communications 2018

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