Soul and sight are inextricably tied together. When my soul is rested and sated with my Savior, my eyes are full of light. They scan the physical topography of my life for the spiritual realities to which they were meant to point.
On my best days, my eyes join my soul in looking for life from the Life-Giver who stands behind and underneath the realities of my life. Interruptions to my plans for the day can be seen as course corrections from a well-intended heavenly father. My children’s meltdowns can be seen as windows into their needs rather than weights to slow me down.
Unfortunately, the inverse is also true. When my soul grows weary, my eyes tend to follow suit. They both give up on the hard work of looking through and begin looking at.
Angry tears were welling in my eyes in carpool line. I felt put-upon and inconvenienced by circumstances that were out of my control. If I am honest, I felt angry with God. Angry that the days had not panned out in the ways I had carefully planned. Angry that choppy relationships seemed to be adding to an already-stormy season. Angry at the failures and foibles of others that reveal my own failures and foibles. After weeks of hard conversations and weighty circumstances, I found myself looking at circumstances and people rather than looking through them.
My eyes and soul, that tired pair, had lost the ability to have a farther, deeper focus. They had stopped looking underneath and through circumstances and people and had settled for looking at them. Such sight is sure to end in disappointment and frustration, for our souls are made for a focal point far beyond this globe. Souls stilled by the gospel and lives anchored into His sure promises are able to look underneath and through circumstances back to the Savior.
Underneath that moment of disobedience is a boy who desperately needs to hear the gospel is true, not just in general, but specifically for him (see 1 John 1:9).
Underneath what feel like demands are deep needs and deep fears that are begging to be directed to a devoted Savior (Proverbs 20:5)
Underneath that angry social media post is a human heart swollen with a story needing to be heard (see James 1:19).
Underneath secondary causes is a loving Savior who is committed to my wholeness and sanctification as well as theirs (see Romans 8:28).
Underneath the destruction of my paper-thin plans, there remains the immovable purposes of a good God.
God, through His Spirt, His Word, and His people, invites me to see through because I have been seen through and yet loved.
God has seen through my sad attempts at self-sufficiency, loving me enough to expose my utter insufficiency (see John 15:4).
God has seen through my thick, complex walls of protection and has initiated to love the little girl who hides behind them (see Isaiah 25:12).
God has seen through my attempts to boast in human knowledge and is slowly training me to let my only boast be understanding and knowing him (see Jeremiah 9:23-24).
God has seen through my frantic need to have illusion of control and continually beckons me to trust Him as the blessed controller of all things (see 1 Timothy 6:15).
The reality is that I need to continually be seen through so that I might see through. I wish it were a one-and-done reality; however, God has seems to prefer an ongoing, relational dynamic with His children.
When my eyes begin to look at rather than seeing through, my soul needs a fresh check-in with the Gentle Physician. When my focus becomes shortened, I need time to refocus on the One who sees me completely yet loves me fully. This will be my reality until that glorious day when my eyes can fully see the One whom fully sees me (see 1 John 3:2 & 1 Corinthians 13:12).