Age-related long sightedness is considered a normal part of getting old. As someone in their 40s, who is realizing that small text is increasingly getting harder to focus on, I am well aware that by the age of 45 many people need reading glasses.
Thankfully though, needing reading glasses does not impact the way that I am learning to see myself. It takes focusing on the truth to see “the inner me” – the way God sees me – and this type of “sight” has no age limit or restriction. But it does take some practice!
Recently I had the opportunity to share about this topic with the teens at the ZOE Learning Center. Through many different activities, from looking through different lenses and objects, to examining different perspectives, we learned that there was often more than just one way to look at something.
Although everyone’s life story is different, there are many things that we all have in common.
- At different points in our lives, we all face setbacks.
- When we face setbacks we have choices about how we respond.
- We all have a choice to see ourselves through our own eyes, or through God’s eyes.
- We all have a choice about whether we listen to lies or truth about who we are.
By recognizing that there is often a mismatch in the way we see ourselves compared to how God sees us, we can choose which lens to look through. I don’t know about you, but for me, the way He sees me is a much nicer view! When God looks at me He sees a beautiful creation, no mistake, chosen, wanted, loved, forgiven … And I must admit sometimes (more often than I care to admit) that’s not the way I see myself.
There are many life lessons that I learn through nature. And the aloe vera plant is one example of something that has taught me a lesson this year. Aloe vera is one of those things that I have growing in various parts of my garden. It sprouts up easily and seems to thrive almost anywhere. To be honest, I used to just see it more like a weed than anything special until I learned and understood how amazing it really is. From being good for your skin, your hair, pimples, itchy bites, sunburn, even in smoothies … it’s really quite incredible.
Sometimes we might feel like a weed, pushed aside, unwanted, useless, out of place in a garden of more beautiful plants, but God doesn’t see us like that. He sees us as amazing. And the aloe vera plant reminds me to see myself, and others, in the same way He does!
By Andrea Cross