Seeing with God’s eyes requires insight that focuses on a much bigger picture than the scene unfolding immediately in front of us.
God sees the start-up, the final product, and every step in between. God sees the reason and the rationale, the action and the attitude that motivated it.
God looks at the heart!
Maybe it’s because God has a clear view of each individual heart that God asks us simple questions. The Bible is full of simple questions formed by God and asked of individuals.
An old seminary professor of mine stated that in the Old Testament God asked the first question of Adam and Eve, “Where are you?” God did not ask because God lacked information. God asked because Adam and Eve has drifted spiritually and were unaware that they had moved.
The Bible is full of folks whose spiritual lives suffered a giant shifting, yet they were unaware of their own spiritual blindness. Saul did not know that the “anointing” has left him. Samson did know that he was empty of spiritual power. The Old Testament priests were unaware that God’s spirit, because of the people’s idolatry, had left the temple. The sin committed by Achan affected the entire community and caused Joshua to suffer a military loss at Ai. Achan was unaware of his sin’s affect until the “lot” fell upon him. Ananias and Sapphira conspired together in secret, and they thought that their actions, though unknown by the Christian community would remain their own little undisclosed lie. They were wrong and paid a tremendous price for their deception. God’s eyes are all seeing!
Even King David needed to be reminded by Nathan the Prophet that God’s eyes were not dimmed or blinded because of David’s position, popularity, or power. Nathan reminded David that God’s eyes were indeed watching and that God required accountability.
I believe that God is asking the people called United Methodist if we are serious about following Jesus? God is challenging us to see a much bigger picture than our local church, our district, our Annual Conference, our Episcopal area, and our jurisdiction.
God is trying to get us to see that the spiritual stakes are far too high and significant for us to put the emphasis on getting our individual preferences satisfied while the fields are full of folks that have never heard the “good news” of a Savior that loves them and died for their sins.
I am convinced that the modern United Methodist church has settled for praying the “prayer of Jabez” while God has been trying to teach us the prayer of John Baptist, “He [Jesus] must increase and I must decrease.” The prayer of Jabez is a self-focused prayer.
Clara H. Scott, a native of Illinois, used the biblical imagery of open eyes as a prayer request. Her petition is for God to allow us to see with God’s eyes. Maybe if we focus on seeing with godly vision, we can escape the trap of seeing with selfishness and individualism. It seems like our current vision is not Christ-focused and is leading us into the ditch of division and despair.
Let us commit ourselves to praying the first verse of Sister Clara’s prayer hymn:
Open my eyes, that I may see, Glimpses of truth Thou hast for me;
Place in my hands the wonderful key, That shall unclasp and set me free.
Silently now I wait for Thee, Ready my God, Thy will to see,
Open my eyes, illumine me, Spirit divine!