VIDEO: FAITH: For the Lord sees not as man sees
I was in the third grade when I had my first eye exam. It was confirmed that I indeed had bad eyes and needed corrective lenses. It was amazing when I received my first pair of glasses of what I was now able to see compared with what I was missing due to having such bad sight. Many of my life’s memories before receiving glasses are extremely blurry in my mind’s eye. This is not just because memories tend to be blurry, but because my memories were defined by the lenses, I was seeing life. At the same time, it was discovered I was color blind, something which to that point I had no reference, but also something which has plagued me at times.
It has been common to explain this color blindness to many. I remember struggling in school with maps and other items requiring color recognition. To answer your question, no, I do not see in black and white, but I am unable to differentiate between colors of similar aspects. I can tell you a banana is not the same color of say a watermelon but would struggle to tell the difference in the color of an orange and the same banana. I mix up browns and green, red and green, yellow and orange, blue and purple, and many other combinations. At the same time, I am not sure what brown is, but I know it is not blue, but still struggle to know what blue is as a color. What a unique challenge to manage in life.
This all goes to emphasize this fact: we all interpret life, situations, and people by the way we see.
This is articulated beautifully in this passage from 1 Samuel 16: 7, “But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”
The Lord is talking about a young David, who He had chosen to be the new king of Israel. Samuel assumed Jesse’s other older, larger, and maybe even stronger sons were in the running for king. God had Samuel make sure all of Jesse’s sons were present and when David came to the line, God confirmed this was His choice. The eyes of God does not look at the appearance of a person, which is the norm for the way we judge people, but at the heart, which only He can see.
The way we see people greatly impacts the way we react, respond, engage, and treat people. As well, the way we see ourselves defines how we interact with others. This can be both a positive and negative engagement. If our personal view is too high or too low, this will seep into not only our view of others, but our assumption of how others may view us. The necessity is not to find a middle ground, but to see both ourselves and others with the eyes of Christ.
One of my favorite worship songs of the early 2000’s said this: “Open the eyes of my heart Lord, Open the eyes of my heart, I want to see You, I want to see You!” This song challenges all of us to keep our eyes focused on the Lord, and in doing so, we see the world the way He leads us. There is also a worship song stating, “break my heart for what breaks Yours!” When we see with Kingdom eyes, we become less concerned about our own needs and more with the needs of others.
I leave you with this ancient prayer from Lancelot Andrewes who was an English Bishop who oversaw the King James Version of the Bible. “Open my eyes that I may see, incline my heart that I may desire, order my steps that I may follow, the way of Your commandments.”
In the days ahead, may we desire to see the Lord high and lifted up and allow Him to correct our vision with lenses forged by the Blood of Jesus Christ. You are Valued and Loved, Pastor Brad
Rev. Brad McKenzie is Lead Pastor at Orange First Church of the Nazarene, 3810 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Orange.