“. . . . , those who previously saw him as a beggar.” John 9:8b
I read this verse today & it really stood out to me about the power of vision & how we see people. In John 9, Jesus heals a man who was born blind. Before his healing, this man sat outside the temple & begged, so everyone recognized him as, ” that beggar guy.” When he was no longer blind, the people struggled to see him as anyone but, “that beggar dude.”
This has started me to think about various people I see: Bob the homeless guy at Starbucks, Tina the blind chick, Marion the needy one, Jerry the deaf dude, . . . .
If we see people only in the quagmire of their pain, dysfunction & disability, then maybe we’re limiting God’s power to work through us.
Maybe it’s a better strategy to ask God to reveal that persons true identity & divine design so that we call out their potential & not merely their inabilities & weaknesses. I’m more than a little grateful that God calls things that are not as though they are!
This is a picture of my new snowboard & the old one that I was using when I got the concussion. The old one still has the bindings on it l, waiting for me to canabalize it for my new lovely. My new snowboard & of course a new helmet are thoroughly fabulous & I’m eager to rip some runs with my new gear that has a concussion free guarantee. But alas, no such thing exists because everyone knows that the gear isn’t as essential as the user. If the user is reckless, then no gear can make the user invincible.
This point rings true across many mediums. We often want to blame a tool or inanimate object for our dysfunctions. We blame guns for killing people & not the people using the guns. We blame alcohol rather than the addict abusing the alcohol. We blame food for an eating disorder rather than face the broken person in the mirror. We try to earn more money or gain more success, erroneously thinking such acquisitions will assuage our insatiable appetite for significance & genuine love.
Let’s take a pause & consider: when we let the Holy Spirit lead us into truth, then we can live free from deception & destruction.
How I ride my snowboard is the defining factor more than the gear I use. And how I chose to ride speaks to who I am. Let’s be mindful to let the Holy Spirit change us on the inside so we stop being externally abusive 🙂
There was a chick in the Bible who I really admire & her name is Abigail. I like her because she stood as a beacon of functional thinking contrary to lots of dysfunction swirling around her. Nabal, her husband, was a foolish man & was treating David with dishonor & dysfunction. David, for his part, was really amped up about how Nabal was treating him, so he decided to get revenge on Nabal. Everyone around Abigail had dysfunctional thinking that was creating dysfunctional behavior that could ultimately lead to destructive outcomes.
But Abigail saves the day with her functional thinking and behavior: She interrupts David’s plans & dissuades his anger. She then returns to Nabal and waits until he gets un-drunk to honestly tell him what she’d done. The outcome from all of these events is that Nabal died & Abigail married David, an upgrade from her former foolish husband.
Let’s be mindful that we don’t let dysfunctional thinking seep into our thoughts. Let’s take captive every thought that exalts itself against the knowledge of Christ! If we’ve made these bad choices (dysfunctional thinking & behavior), then let’s repent and ask the Holy Spirit to help us in our thoughts & actions to be more healthy & constructive!
The word, “father” evokes lots of feelings, emotions, thoughts & responses. Unfortunately, because we’re finite & don’t have unlimited understanding, we take our experiences & project them onto other things & relationships – be that good or bad. This can be a problem when you consider that when Jesus teaches us how to pray, He tells us to address God as our Father. Notice that Jesus did not say to address the 1st person of the Trinity as: boss / employer, best friend, roommate, master, slave driver, etc. Jesus tells us to address the person we pray to as our Father in heaven.
Furthermore, I believe that there are a few reasons why our relationship with our heavenly Father can get dysfunctional based on the parable of the prodigal’s son. Consider that both sons didn’t have a very healthy relationship with their father. The prodigal’s relationship with his father lacked intimacy because the son was selfish. The older son’s relationship with his father was dysfunctional because he didn’t even see his father as his dad – consider how he describes his interaction with his dad in Luke 15:29; this doesn’t sound alot like a father / son relationship.
So when you address your heavenly Father, is there some dysfunction you could possibly be projecting onto your relationship with Him? What might this be & could God be wanting to help you make some healthy adjustments so that your interaction with Him is more authentic? Feel free to leave comments / thoughts. 🙂