Looking for the Overlooked

What is it you see when you see? The human eye is a remarkable instrument. We can focus on something miles away in the distance and in an instant shift our focus to something right in front of us and not miss a beat. Our brain can quickly process spatial difference, how near or far something is. It can instantly discern relational difference, what category to put things in. Yet with all that our vision takes in, our sight can still be distorted.

For example, we see people, but we get stuck on the superficial, the labels. Those labels can be quite limiting. Once we put a label on someone or a group of people, that can be all we see. Those labels can be quite distancing. They become an excuse to avoid others, to write others off, to withhold compassion, love, mercy, and forgiveness. Those labels can be quite dehumanizing. They become a reason to refuse respect, to rob people of dignity.

The trajectory of our faith opens our eyes to a different way of seeing. While we used to get stuck with the superficial, God teaches us to look at the heart, to see what’s on the inside (1 Sam. 16). While our old way of viewing others was from a “human point of view,” we’ve discarded those worn out lenses. We see the world differently because Jesus is changing the world, ushering in a new creation (2 Cor. 5:16-17). We see people differently now. All the labels that we used to separate and segregate and denigrate are done away with (Col. 3:11; Gal. 3:28). The scales are being removed. Our vision is being restored.

That is critical for living the Christ-like life. I’m convinced that the more we start to see Jesus in others, the more we can’t help but be Jesus to others. Seeing truly changes our being.

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