Mary Johnson

It was early in the morning one day last week. I was warm and snuggled in my bed. I could hear one of my children coming down the hallway toward our bedroom, and I knew he or she would be headed my way. I felt a tapping on my shoulder, and as I rolled over I tried to open up my eyes the least amount possible to see if I could figure out which one of my kids was awakening me. It’s funny how little you can see in a dark room with your eyes barely opened. I heard what my daughter said to me, but it took her repeating it a few times before I realized it was her talking and not one of our boys. Had I opened up my eyes to see her clearly, I would have known from the beginning who it was and processed what she needed in a quicker way.

During our waking hours, living our daily physical life, it’s best if we have our eyes wide open to see what is happening around us. In our spiritual life, it is best if our eyes are wide open to who God is and what He wants us to do. One of my goals this year is to do something I heard Pastor Andy Stanley say. “We want to see people the way God sees them and to love people the way God loves them.” Unless we have our eyes and heart open to who God truly is, we will never be able to love others as He does or see others as He does. We have to be purposed to spend time with God so we can be familiar with His nature. We need to read His Word so we know how He thinks and discover what His love looks like. I just heard a radio program today where the hosts were talking about God and saying things about Him that weren’t true. I wished I could shout to them, “You’re not describing the God I know and the truth that is represented in the Bible!” My guess is those people have never tried to learn about the true nature of God. I don’t want the same to be said about me. I want my actions in life to represent my understanding of what a loving, powerful, and present God I serve. I want to know and love God so that I know and love people.

Mark 6:34 describes Jesus reaction to a group of people that He encounters: “When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd.”

Jesus sees people with compassion. That is how I want to see others. I don’t want to see them with my eyes/heart partially opened. I want to see them in a redemptive and loving light. Isn’t it just the best when we are known and still loved? I’m thankful that God knows me and still loves me. I want to know and love God. I want to know and love others. I want my eyes wide open to who God is and to the opportunities to love others around me. Let’s pray this week that we can be purposed to make time to know God (to read His Word, to pray, to worship), and that our knowledge of Him will spill into every area of our life. Let’s pray for opportunities to see people the way God sees them and to love people the way God loves them.