Answering The Call is an international missions organization dedicated to reaching people in difficult to reach places.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Through New Eyes

In my lifetime, I have been to India, Africa, China, Albania, Mexico and Jamaica (just to name a few) on numerous mission trips. I have seen poverty at its' worst. I have seen people healed. I have had the privilege to teach and preach before small and large crowds. I would say that each experience resulted in a deeper more intimate relationship with Jesus. I had become a "pro" at short-term missions.

I recently arrived in the D.R. Congo. A friend of mine, who is like a brother, came on this his very first mission trip. As we laid hands on him to pray for God's favor, blessing and anointing during the trip, I expressly prayed that he would embrace every experience and that he would really see, feel and hear everything the Lord placed in front of him. I prayed that my brother would release all control and be abandoned to how the Lord wanted to move in his life.

It is so often true in my life, and I wonder if in yours, that the heartfelt prayers I genuinely pray for others are also meant and intended for me.

On one occasion while in Congo, we visited a feeding center that fed orphans. This was my second trip as I had visited this same site in 2002. I saw the same poverty I had witnessed before; I smelled the stench of oppression that I had breathed before; and I encountered the same hunger that had confronted me in the past. I was almost mechanical. A "technician" of sorts. This experience was not new to me.

What was new to me, however, was seeing this familiar scene through the eyes of my brother. A brother whose heart I have come to know. What I saw through his eyes took me off guard.

I saw with eyes that were shocked, disgusted, dismayed and almost helpless. I saw through eyes full of anger at this injustice. Most of all, through these newfound eyes of mine, I saw with a tender compassion.

A thought occurred to me as I began to "see" through this fresh set of eyes; eyes that were looking at this scene for the very first time. I was seeing this starvation, this injustice, this oppression, through the eyes of Jesus.

No, my friend is not Jesus, but that day, he really "saw" as Jesus sees. You see, it matters not the number of times Jesus watches injustice, encounters starvation, or witnesses oppression. It is always as if it confronts Him for the very first time.

It makes Him very angry!

It fills His nostrils with disgust and His heart with dismay!

Most of all, He is always moved toward compassion.

The Bible tells us that "the Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit", (Psalm 34:18), and that, as believers in Christ, we have become "brothers" with Christ. (Romans 8:29)

As I see it now, I have one of three ways in which to respond: I can remain mechanical, a "technician", as I carry out my good works; I can bury my head in the sand and pretend injustice does not exist; or, as a co-heir with Christ, I can embrace what my brother Jesus sees. I can really "see" as He sees.

The first two options are safe, secure and comfortable. The third option is risky, vulnerable and often overwhelming. The first two choices always lead to blindness and spiritual death.

The only true choice, the only way, is the way of Jesus. The only way is to "see" like Jesus. Seeing through the eyes of Jesus, every time afresh and anew, always leads to true sight and abundant life.

As for me, I embrace sight.

Mike Massey

ATC Board Member