“What Do You See?”

We’ve probably all heard of ink blot tests (Rorshack tests) that psychiatrists use in diagnoses. The way I understand it these inkblots test your perceptions. Doctors show you the sample and then ask, “What do you see?” Psychiatrists aren’t the only ones who ask this question, God frequently asks this as well. However, He asks it not to diagnose us, but to get us to see the world through His eyes.

Years ago my husband’s company went through an improvement campaign as they tend to do once every few years. This campaign focused on having a paradigm shift and being able to see from another’s perspective – a good thing to be able to do. My Sweetie came home with the tag line of the training: “Things are not as they are, but as they are perceived.” There is truth in this statement. We humans tend to see what we want to see. (That is obvious from the recent American political campaigning and election.) We look at the world through our own individual, mental lens which is just as distinct and varied as our individual eye glass prescriptions.

We each have our own world view. We can generalize and call it a Christian world view or a secular world view, but those are broad categories. Getting more specific within a Christian world view you find many differences of opinion in how an individual views life, God, people, and the society around him. But if even Christian world views vary, which one is correct?

I have an answer?

The one that looks to Jesus for all answers and is open to being corrected if we misinterpret.

As I was reading through the Bible last year something caught my attention. Jehovah God frequently asked His earthly prophets that question I mentioned: What do you see?

God understood the human paradigm didn’t always see things clearly or accurately. Of course, He does! He made us! He knows how we see the world only from our own point of view. I think that may be why He asked Isaiah and Amos and Zechariah those questions. And why He asks us, if we listen, What do you see?

Isaiah 55:8 states, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.” As Creator to the universe, God sees our world in total truth and accuracy. Therefore, His thoughts are always correct. He understands and knows all the intricacies of any situation. We, on the other hand, are not always correct; our thoughts and ways are not His. We see things from a skewed perspective through the lens of sin and selfishness. Mentally I’ve always equated it with those “drunk” glasses – you know, the ones that simulate the effects of alcohol impairment with lenses that cause visual distortion. Our perceptions are just that, distorted perceptions, not truth. Scripture tells us this, it says that we don’t see clearly. Hidden away in the love chapter is this verse: “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. ” (1 Corinthians 13:12)

We see in a mirror dimly. … We only know in part. … Do we realize this? In any given situation, humanly we can only see dimly as though looking in a foggy bathroom mirror and we can only know a partial truth. I tend to think I know the answer. (If you don’t believe me ask my husband!) And he thinks the same thing about His answer even when our answers are polar opposites. It’s not possible for us both to be right, but we are both convinced we are. My husband’s favorite line to say about himself is, “Not always right, but never in doubt.” Is that not a true statement about most of us? So if we see dimly, and if we are not right when we think we are, yet we confidently assert ourselves, would it not be best to listen to THE ONE who does know? The One who is right? When His still, small voice asks us “What do you see?” we need to look and listen.

God has so much wisdom and knowledge and understanding to reveal to us, yet we go on our merry, prideful way thinking we know it all. Let’s stop. Let’s look to Jesus for answers. Let us try to see through His eyes. Let us humble ourselves before Him and seek His ways and thoughts. Let us listen when He whispers – What do you see? and then open our spiritual eyes and ask Him to show us truth.

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