Eyes Wide Open!
Open my eyes so that I may contemplate wondrous things from your instruction.
Psalms 119:18 (CSB)
With arms outstretched, eyes wide open, let me gather to myself all the wonder that is in your grace, our grand and glorious Lord and Savior!
If we don’t look we will miss the blessing. If we refused to listen we will not hear the song. If we do not pray, how can we possibly expect to hear him speak to us? If we do not commune in His Word, what may the Spirit reveal to us?
The Psalmist goes on in the next verse…
I am a resident alien on earth; do not hide your commands from me.
Psalms 119:19 (CSB)
This is only our transitional state of being here in this life. Our Creator has more significant plans for us than an existence in this world fraught with corruption and sin.
He has more for us upon our departure from this life and more for us now. But you see, to fully appreciate the wonders he provides to us today we must seek his face.
Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.
Remember the wondrous works he has done, his wonders, and the judgments he has pronounced, you offspring of Abraham his servant, Jacob’s descendants — his chosen ones.
Psalms 105:4-6 (CSB)
We exist in this world, but we are not intended to ‘live’ in this world. Jesus had every intention when he created humanity to establish literally a ‘long-term’ relationship with his creation. We were not simply some curiosity that he sought to satisfy by breathing life into our fragile structures.
He wasn’t trying to find out if we would betray him in our selfish lust of self-gratification. He knew we would. He knew it.
Before he formed Adam from the dust he was conscious of the fact that the separation that took place in the garden would require his own personal sacrifice on the cross to redeem this creation to himself, “so that where I am you may be also. (John 14:3b CSB)”
It is the ‘why we are here’. It is the ‘why Jesus was born of a virgin’. It is the reason the only way he could have the relationship he so desired to have with us, was to hang on the tree of Calvary and die for our sins. It is ‘why’ we must open our eyes to the light of his grace and salvation if we are to live as the beings that he intended us to be.
A Package Deal
No one has greater love than this: to lay down his life for his friends.
You are my friends if you do what I command you.
I do not call you servants anymore, because a servant doesn’t know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything I have heard from my Father.
You did not choose me, but I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce fruit and that your fruit should remain so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he will give you.
This is what I command you: Love one another.
John 15:13-17 (CSB)
All of this, decided before he spoke the first star into existence.
There is so much more to salvation than ‘just heaven and eternal life’. Heaven merely describes the place where we will exist and thrive in the presence of our Creator. The thing that makes ‘life eternal’ something spectacular isn’t that we will live on forever but that we will forever be united with Christ Jesus and live with him and him with us!
Please re-read this passage in John again taking into consideration that all of this was prepackaged by Jesus for our sake and this bundle has both obligation and privilege blended together. This isn’t so as to put terms on the gift of grace, no that grace is free and abundant, but this is the arrangement at the wedding feast. This is the table that the groom has laid before us to fulfill ourselves in his love.
A. No greater love has one but to give their life for their friends.
B. We are his friends if we obey his commands.
C. This is not servitude, it is a function of this relationship he is establishing with us. As a result of this, he makes known to us all that is in His Word.
D. Sure we choose to surrender to his will for us, but it was his will for us to surrender that gave us that desire to do so. Have you not considered what the moving of the Holy Spirit on our lives really is? It is nothing less than God showing us what he desires us to do. He has chosen us!
E. He’s appointed us (you and me) to ‘go’ and produce fruit. Lasting fruit that will remain.
F. Our will melded in his will and whatever we ask on behalf of Christ is ours!
G. One encompassing directive at the end. That we love each other. I like to think that the reason for that is because he loves each of us so he wishes for us to share in that love he has for all of us.
And the glory of the Lord will appear, and all humanity together will see it, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.
Isaiah 40:5 (CSB)
Now it but for us to open our eyes to the ‘glory of the Lord’. It is present with us but it requires that we open ourselves to it, just as we have opened our hearts to him from whom we receive the grace of our salvation.
Jesus wants us to experience the life he gives us now, not waiting till this life is over to partake in his wondrous glory. It begins here, now, while we are bound to this life.
We live separate from the world while in the world because we are not part of the world.
A thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.
John 10:10 (CSB)
For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.
Matthew 6:32-33 (CSB)
You reveal the path of life to me; in your presence is abundant joy; at your right hand are eternal pleasures.
Psalms 16:11 (CSB)
We only have to open our eyes to the life he intends for us to have, living in his presence. Not later, but now!
We are to live in him and he in us. We are to be his Disciples and to disciple others. Therein lay the elements that provide abundance in this life and the life we will share with him eternally.
If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you want and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this: that you produce much fruit and prove to be my disciples.
John 15:7-8 (CSB)
It starts now, with Eyes Wide Open!