Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Eyes Open

It’s stunning how often I need to have my eyes opened. You, too?

I don’t mean the eyes I see you with, or the sunrise, the snow falling yet again here in Colorado, or the eyes I watch television with. I mean the eyes God gave me, the ones in my heart. There is so much working to close those eyes.

My favorite Bible big-wig prayed: “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation so that you may know Him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparably great power for us who believe…” (Eph 1:17-19a)

It seems that every time I’m not actually knowing God, it’s because I’ve lost the genuine thrill of the “hope to which He has called” me. In my life, sometimes hope in Christ has been shot-through with disappointment, and my eyes can only see the circumstances in which it happened. When that’s all I can see, “the riches of His glorious inheritance” in me seem hollow, like someone stole them when I wasn’t looking. If I’m a sort of godly treasure chest, I must be empty. And as far as “His incomparably great power” for me goes, well, sure. I don’t doubt that He is all powerful, but I haven’t felt or seen any of that for quite a while.

And I’ve gone blind.

What helps me then is how life is set up for me to notice that I can’t see. I get grumpy, overly sarcastic, cynical, excessively bothered by politicians, and withdrawn. In other words, I’m revisiting life as a flesh-bag. I hate that! Do you ever feel that?

So, I get really smart and brilliantly strategic, and employ all my training to come up with the perfect thing to do in order to get my eyes open again—ha. I might say aloud, “Where are you, Jesus?!” or “What in the world is wrong with me?!” or “Holy Spirit, have you gotten out of me while the gettin’ was good, or are you still in there?!” Or perhaps I open my Bible or a great biblically oriented book, and then, with it open in my lap, sit there awhile…and maybe have a melt-down.

And, my eyes opening, I can see again.

What’s happened is that I’ve finally burned-out. I was snookered away from the life and power that comes from God and works in me, having exchanged it for the work that seems to get the job of the day-all-around-me done. I’ve been burning the wrong fuel—life by the flesh, instead of life by the Spirit.

Unless I want to go through life with my eyes closed, that doesn’t work for me anymore. I bet it doesn't for you, either.

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