I think that sometimes it can be so much easier to see the bad in people rather than the good. I think that can be especially true for people who are gifted in the prophetic. But it makes me wonder if we are seeing the bad so easily because it’s the only thing we are looking for.
But I don’t believe God looks for the bad. I don’t think He misses it but I don’t think it’s among the first things He notices about us. How many times have you looked at someone with an intentional effort to see them the way God does? Do you even know how He looks at us?
I was walking down the sidewalk of a plaza when my attention was drawn to a man slowly making his way through the parking lot. Almost even before my eyes landed on him I heard the Lord tell me that He had given the man a heart of worship. I remember thinking, wow that’s cool and then almost immediately after, him? Really? Are you serious?
I could see the man was maybe in his 50’s. His walk was slow and seemed almost labored. Not because there was anything physically wrong but it was as if he had been carrying a heavy weight on his shoulders for years. His shoulders were slumped and hopelessness surrounded him like a cloud.
But then I looked. Past the dense cloud and past everything I noticed on the exterior. What I saw amazed me. There, in the middle of his abdomen, past skin, tissue, muscle and whatever else was what looked to be a large nugget of sparkling gold, shining with the radiant glory of God.
Then I heard the Lord say, “Go and tell him what you see.” I didn’t need to be told twice. I was being propelled by the love of God that had washed over me and in no time I was standing in front of the man introducing myself. I told him that I just wanted to come over and let him know that God had given him the heart of a worshipper.
The man’s eyes got wide and I could tell he didn’t really know what to do with that information. Then I heard the Lord tell me again, “Tell him what you saw”. So I began to share with him about the piece of treasure I saw deep inside of him and as I talked I felt the presence of God begin to rise all around us.
As I described what I had seen the Lord gave me even more words to speak to him and the man’s whole countenance began to change. I saw all of the hard years leave his eyes, being replaced with youthful hope. He looked at me with those fresh eyes of hope and said just above a whisper, “You really see that in me?” I almost cried at his question and I told him how brightly he was shinning inside. The love of God was palpable as He resurrected the mans heart right in front of me.
I need to mention something very important. At no time during this encounter was I ignorant to the darkness of the man’s past and present. I knew that there were things there that shouldn’t be. But, and get this, the darkness of his past and present PALED in comparison to all the good the Lord had placed inside of him. What the man had been and was, was NOTHING compared to what God had created him to be and is still calling him to be.
When God looks at us He is not looking at the bad or on a mission to expose all of the horrible things you’ve done in your life. When God looks at us He is looking for the beauty, and He finds it! It’s not that He doesn’t see the areas in our lives that need to change, it’s that it’s not His immediate focus. I believe His immediate concern is making sure we know that we’re loved and cherished by Him.
I was driving down the road one day when the Lord spoke and told me, “If people really understood how I love them, how I feel about them, they would never be anxious or nervous to come into my presence or receive a ‘word’ from me.”
It seems like many times we are trained to see the bad. It’s how many of us grew up, with our faults being pointed out. Many times that “training” comes out in the way we minister. But that’s not how God sees and it’s not how we should. Just get wrecked by His love :).
Jesse and Kara Birkey
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