Appearances can be deceiving when I don't see with God's eyes
by Connie Faber, CL editor
Jill was driving the speed limit—75 mph—as she traveled Interstate 35 between Wichita and Salina, Kan., and yet cars, trucks and semis were consistently passing her. It did feel like she was just crawling along, and so she began driving faster. When the speedometer registered 100 mph and most other drivers were still passing her, Jill knew something was wrong. The car was running just fine, she concluded, so what was the problem? When she arrived home and told her husband the story, he quickly solved the mystery. Earlier in the day when she had filled the gas tank and reset the trip odometer, Jill had inadvertently changed the speedometer from miles to kilometers. Which meant that in order to reach the speed limit, Jill should have been driving at what appeared to be140 mph.
Jill’s experience reminds me that appearances can be deceiving, and that’s the message that threads its way through the three articles in this issue’s feature section. It doesn’t matter if I have a genetic condition that results in cognitive delays or problems with attention, impulsivity and overactivity—I am made in God’s image and in his eyes I am priceless. I may own a very nice car, have a high-paying job and plenty of money, but what I have in the bank or parked in the garage won’t alter the way God sees me. Whether rich or poor or somewhere in between, I am God’s chosen, holy and beloved child.
Given God’s amazing love for us, our dealings with others, whether they are children or adults, should be guided by two things: seeing others with God’s eyes and consequently treating everyone—regardless of appearance, disability, faith, gender or race—with kindness and respect. Each of us likely can think of a situation—and maybe more than one—in which seeing with God’s eyes and responding with God’s generous grace is easier said than done.
I teach grade school kids Wednesday nights at my church. My co-teacher and I lead three groups of kids in a 15-minute, sometimes noisy, activity that reinforces our Bible story. During one recent Wednesday night a student took a flying leap and threw himself spread-eagle onto the classroom table. I was frustrated, and he knew it. I talked to him—graciously, I hope—about his behavior, but could I have done more to reinforce the fact that God loves us all even when we mess up?
I pray that we will be sensitive to God’s nudges—to see with God’s eyes—as we work with our congregation’s children, interact with our families, friends and colleagues and encounter strangers whose appearance tempts us to see them as less than God’s chosen, holy and beloved children.
This article is part of the CL Archives. Articles published between August 2017 and July 2008 were posted on a previous website and are archived here for your convenience. We have also posted occasional articles published prior to 2008 as part of the archive. To report a problem with the archived article, please contact the CL editor at email@example.com.