When our daughters don’t know what to pray, Shane has gotten into the habit of reminding them to ask God to do one simple thing for them:
“Please open the eyes of my heart that I might see You.”
What a good reminder that is for me. Although my spiritual eyes have been opened, my vision can quickly get blurry. It’s blurred by the war going on of flesh versus spirit inside of me; the constant darkness at war with Light going on in me and the world around me.
We are exhorted in Scripture to be “sober minded” (2 Timothy 4:5, 1 Peter 1:13, 4:7, 5:8). To help paint the picture, here are some scenes that are always helpful for me: In The Matrix, Neo takes the proverbial “red pill” and sees life for what it is (and it isn’t all that encouraging). King Theoden in the second Lord of the Rings installment – The Two Towers – is under a spell that has rendered him apathetic to the point of being barely cognizant. I think if we are honest with ourselves, we who know Jesus also know how easy it is to gradually become “sleepy”… with vision blurred and heart dulled.
Come awaken me
Wake me from my sleep
Come awaken me
There’s more than what I feel or see…
I had been reading Zechariah and was so surprised and stirred by the Messianic thread woven throughout that book. (Note: the minor prophets are very much worth our time and study!)
“… ‘behold, I will bring my servant the Branch. For behold, on the stone that I have set before Joshua, on a single stone with seven eyes, I will engrave its inscription, declares the Lord of hosts, and I will remove the iniquity of this land in a single day. In that day, declares the Lord of hosts, every one of you will invite his neighbor to come under his vine and under his fig tree.’
And the angel who talked with me came again and woke me, like a man who is awakened out of his sleep…” (Zechariah 3:8-10;4:1)
I love moments like this in Scripture: when someone sees Him; when they suddenly see things not as they seem, but as they truly are. It’s like being woken from a deep sleep. I don’t know about you, but I’ve had a few precious moments like that.
Most of life in Him this side of eternity is walking by faith. We ask, we wait, we cling to the Word. Most of life with a regenerate heart living in the “already but not yet” reality comes with a good dose of angst and dependence and the work of belief. (John 6:29)
But then – there are those moments when He opens our eyes and kindles aflame the embers of affection for Him, and we behold.
He truly is good to those who wait on Him. The vision of our good and sovereign God in the midst of our reality can do nothing less than renew our strength. It’s His kindness when He gives a fresh sobering of your mind and heart; when the clouds part and you see the bright light of Jesus piercing through the fog of apathy, busyness, culture, and even the murkiness of your own heart. Seeing Jesus… wakes you up.
This song continues to be my prayer, not just for the beginning of a record, but for my day-in, day-out.
“For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him, having the eyes of your heart enlightened…” (Ephesians 1:15-18)