Start from the beginning here.
I get up and start the day right, yesterday’s lesson not lost on me. And through all of my morning reading the theme's so clear it may have well been titled Eyes to See. First one book discusses the Holiness of God, how it cannot be separated from His Grace. Without seeing His Holiness I can not properly value His Grace. It tells of Isaiah who saw a vision of God in His throne room splendor, immediately understood his own baseness and craven nature and then received forgiveness. Seeing God allowed Isaiah to properly see his own need for forgiveness. Ann, too, meditates on the eyes, the eyes to see His Glory around her, the hunger it creates to see more to know more deeply. And again the awareness that the more the Holy Spirit enables her to see God, the more clearly she sees that only grace affords her this privilege. On her own she can not become worthy. I see that in the light of holiness all good in me and my life is grace.
So I pray, give me eyes to see more of who you are. And I open Matthew. I hear Jesus warning his friends that he'll be arrested at anytime now and they will flee. Even after walking with the Son of God for 3 years they argue with Him. (But then how long have I walked with Him and petulance is still so often my first response.) They are determined that they would never desert Jesus. I wonder, what gives them their confidence? Could it be that like the proverbial plank, they loom so large in their own eyes that they can’t rightly see who they’re arguing with?
Then the priests discuss what to do with the blood money a remorseful Judas flung back at them. The callousness of their words floors me. “It wouldn’t be right to give this –a payment for murder!-as an offering in the Temple.” Matthew 27:6 They are so focused on the legality of where the money goes they miss that they are the ones who paid for MURDER! Their complicity is never addressed as if they are somehow at arms length from this transaction. How large do they loom in their own eyes to miss this broken commandment?
My Lord dies; and the earth splits open, graves spill open, the veil separating the Holy of Holies tears open. What is hidden revealed. And the soldiers who pounded the nails, saw, truly saw, exclaiming, "This has to be the Son of God." Matthew 27:54 Next I read of the women, Jesus's friends, coming to the grave. In Matthew it says they were keeping vigil, eyes open and still loving when the angel appeared to them, announcing Jesus's ressurection. They had eyes to see and so glory was displayed.
My time following Jesus in Matthew ends with a post resurrection reunion between Jesus and his friends. The moment they saw Him they worshiped Him. Some, though, held back, not sure about worship, about risking themselves totally. Matthew 28:17 MSG After all of that, after all that time seeing, some still held back from worship because they were afraid to risk themselves totally. Is it possible that they somehow still loomed too large in their own eyes to fully see Him, the risen Jesus? What about me? How well am I seeing? It depends. Twelve days into Lent and I do believe this, when I am focused on my own disappointments and my own seemingly hopeless dreams my anger at God blinds me. It lodges like a great big stone in my eye and I can’t see around it. Open the eyes of my heart, Lord. Open the eyes of my heart. I want to see you.