There are certain words none of us want to hear again when 2020 ends. Besides practicing social distancing and hearing about a friend who was quarantined, there are three other words that have also become a catch phrase.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, Face-to-face became important. Those words refer to students who sit in a classroom in front of their teacher face-to-face, instead of receiving their education virtually at home through the square box of a computer. My wife is an Elementary School Improvement Specialist, and she’s heard many irate parents’ present heated arguments in favor of face to face education vs. a virtual one.
Besides the educational world, many people prefer a face-to-face encounter with the folks they deal with on a regular basis in every aspect of their lives. It’s more personal, without any technological distance.
Many are still stuck inside due to the virus, and keep experiencing an ongoing distance from the people they used to be able to see and touch, which for some has spawned depression.
Man’s soul wasn’t made to be quarantined. Spiritually, who hasn’t felt a distance from the God we’ve never laid eyes on. Is seeing really believing?
But what if you can’t see physically, like the woman who wrote the hymn, Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus. Robert Morgan writes:
“Helen Howarth Lemmel was born in England in 1863, into the house of a Wesleyan minister who immigrated to America when Helen was a child. She loved music, and her parents provided the best vocal teachers they could find. Eventually Helen returned to Europe to study vocal music in Germany. In time, she married a wealthy European, but he left her when she became blind, and Helen struggled with multiple heartaches during midlife.” (Then Sings My Soul)
Morgan also wrote that before Helen died she was almost destitute, living on government assistance in a meager bedroom. She died in Seattle in 1961, thirteen days before her 98th birthday after writing close to 500 hymns.
Most of us aren’t blind, and don’t even know people who are. How then, do you shift your eyes to the Jesus you’ve never seen? The answer is found behind the eyes.
Isaiah wrote, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal rock.” (emphasis mine, 26:3-4, NLT)
To turn to Christ, this side of heaven, requires doing an about-face from your-self, by keeping an ongoing dialogue with Him regarding your thoughts. Pray without ceasing (found in I Thessalonians 5:17) says it all. You can’t stop talking to God about what’s bothering you. If not, you’ll lose your spiritual focus.
Thankfully, one day we will see Jesus when he returns to this earth for the second time. “Look, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him…” (emphasis mine, Revelation 1:7a, NLT). What needs to shift or pivot as you journey with God?
video: Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus
Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus
pictures courtesy of pexels.com and “Nelson & his Nikon”