Every day, as I pull into the driveway, I see this beautiful array of Knockout Roses and Sweet Potato Vines. The rosy pink flowers and bright green leaves are striking and provide a pleasant welcome home.
A few days ago, I went out with clippers in hand to check everything.
When I looked closely at the roses, I could see the many blossoms that had paled, spread wide open, or lost petals. Time to clip them off to give renewed energy to the new blossoms.
Then to examine the Sweet Potato Vine. It grows quite fast and can quickly get out of control, crawling out on the driveway, spreading under the bushes, or creeping up into the roses. I don’t see any of this just passing by in the car. I have to get out and really look at it.
There really is a point to this other than sharing my little garden spot with you or showing off my new-found skill at learning how to put pictures on my blog!
How easy for us to go through life just glancing at the things that most catch our eye rather than looking closely for all that goes with it, things that need to be cleaned up or clipped out of our lives. To fully see, we must look—intentionally.
Scripture is replete with verses about “looking.”
I will lift my eyes to you, to you whose throne is in heaven. Psalm 123:1
…let us throw off everything that hinders [clip off dead blossoms] and the sin that so easily entangles [winding vines]… let us fix our eyes on Jesus [the beautiful red bloom], the author and perfecter of our faith… Hebrews 12:1-2
What do I need to clip out of my life? A bad attitude, a critical spirit, hasty words? What vines are slowly entangling? Wasteful time on the iPhone or taking on too many tasks?
I think about the Bible character, Matthew. What things did he allow into his life that needed to be clipped and untangled? I wonder what he saw from his vantage point at his tax collector’s booth by the sea. Did he see Jesus performing miracles? Did he watch Jesus touching people lovingly? Did he hear His teachings? Was Matthew thinking about his sinner friends and his own sin that had led him to become a despised tax collector? Was he convicted of that sin, ready to weed out the sin-sickness that had infected his life?
Whatever Matthew saw, whatever he felt, he was ready when Jesus looked directly into his eyes and said, “Follow me.” Matthew left everything to follow Jesus because he finally had Eyes to See. Thus the title of my next book.
May we have eyes that continuously gaze at our creator, the author and perfecter of our faith.
~ Joyce ~