At an art museum, with the velvet red ropes, and the grand frames that hold the most famous paintings and drawings; I caught myself watching the people more than actual artwork I paid to see. Some came in groups and others alone, some kept a steady pace walking from frame to frame, others stood still for various times. There was one man with silver hair and liver spotted his hands held behind his back. He stood against the soft rope patiently yet intently steadying the painting. You could barely see his head move as he took in every bit of that painting. Curiously I started walking towards him, trying to look at the picture myself but lost as to why he would spend so much time at this particular painting. I stood a couple feet behind him for a couple minutes but still couldn’t see it, it was beautiful yes but I was missing something. I believe he heard my sigh because he began talking but continued to face the artwork. He told me the painting itself is the finished work, the accomplishment. He then told me to look closer. Taking a few steps, I met him at the velvet rope, it was the same painting. He told me to stop trying to see everything at one time but to look at the small details, to follow the brush strokes from where they began and where they ended, to look at the color blending and where the artist highlighted or shadowed, to feel with my eyes the texture of the paint. I under stood after that, I was no longer seeing just the painting, I was seeing the journey the artist went on to get there.
Sometimes looking at the big picture or just relying on what we see with our eyes, it’s easy to miss things, it’s easy to miss where God is. Sometimes we stand back and look at our lives in the grand scheme of things, seeing disappointments and frustrations, things we didn’t expect. We end up forgetting that if we change our perspective and look up close we can see how intricately God is in our lives. Even in the big picture when we can’t see where He is, if we change our view point we will see He has been there all along. The Lord wants to seal for you, remind you, engrain in you, that He is there. How disappointing would it be if He was trying to speak to us, show us, introduce Himself to us, bless us, yet we were so distracted with disappointment or discouraged, maybe life didn’t go as planned that we end up missing out on that encounter. We were unaware of God’s presence with us. There are two gentlemen in the bible that just like us needed to adjust their view. If it hadn’t been for the perfect patients Jesus Christ has, they would have missed out.
In Luke 24 there are two, disappointed gentlemen. They thought their messiah would come with a triumph of glory, concurring all but Jesus came as a servant; this is not what they anticipated. They were confused and disappointed that Jesus was crucified on the cross of Calvary; they aren’t quite sure if the rumors of His resurrection were true. Unknowingly on their walk home from Jerusalem, Jesus was with them, the presence of God Himself was there, but they couldn’t see Him clearly. They were clouded with confusion, disappointment, discouraged of all that had just happened. They were unaware that the one walking and talking with them was Jesus Christ. I believe that what God wants for you and I, this revolution of peace not just for our own hearts but also for the nation, that He wants to bring to our hearts the encounter of Him, He wants to meet with you.
The secret of beholding is to open your eyes and leaning in, being aware of your circumstance. The greatest miracle God can do in your life and in mine is not to change our circumstance but to change our hearts while we’re in the circumstance. The greatest miracle He can do is to open our eyes to see Him through the circumstance, to see Him right before us, His glory, His grace, favor and patients. The abundant life isn’t just when everything is good, the abundant life is when things are a-miss and Jesus shows up and your eyes have opened and you see.