pondered

Dear Son,

 

By the time that you read this, you will be a man. Because I may not be present for your celebration, I wanted to send you my thoughts on this special consecration day. 

 

I’d always dreamed of this day, but it was so much different than I expected.

 

I’d dreamed of walking to the temple with my husband and handing over the lamb for my purification. But those were childish dreams, dreams of marrying a man of influence and position.

 

Instead I held you, our very own little lamb.

 

Everything has been radically different from all my expectations, my son.

 

An angel’s visit, first to me and then to your daddy. I call him your daddy, but how shall I ever explain to you what truly happened?

 

Even now, as I try to piece together the story, it really makes very little sense. Words can’t adequately express the realities of peeking behind the curtain at the unseen. Although it was less than a year ago when I welcomed the plan, I couldn’t understand then how doing so would upset so many.

 

As I look you, my baby boy, I find my eyes misting even now. I’ve had so many feelings over the course of the past year.

 

The fear of telling your daddy. The joy of telling your cousin, Elizabeth. The humiliation of your grandparents. The abandonment of my friends. The panic of an unexpected trip. The disappointment of our abode. The despair of the contractions. The gratefulness of your birth.

 

Women always recount their birth experience. The agony, the sweat, the weakness. It was all of this and more. The stench of the manger, the darkness of the night, the hay that stuck to us all. The glory. Yes, glory.

 

Being awakened by shepherds. Stumbling, stuttering, clumsily clamoring. Interrupting our silence with their news of angels, light and music.

 

What will our future hold? What will your life entail, my little one?

 

Today, the priest did his duty, but missed the mystery. What he saw with his eyes, he overlooked with his spirit, didn’t he, my son? He may have been a priest, but Simeon was the prophet.

 

“A light of revelation to the Gentiles,” Simeon had said. “Appointed for the rise and fall of many.”

 

And then as the priest sliced asunder the breast of the turtledove, Simeon turned to me and said, “a sword will pierce even your own soul.”

 

These words cut through my very heart, dear boy. I’m anxious and yet awed. Puzzled and yet petrified. Brave and yet bewildered.

 

But for my little lamb I’ll be strong. I will shield you. I will protect you. After all I am your mother.

pondering2

 

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“But there were standing by the cross of Jesus, His mother, and His mother’s sister…when Jesus therefore saw His mother and the disciple whom He loved standing nearby, He said to His mother, ‘Woman, behold, your son!’. Then He said to the disciple, ‘Behold, your mother!’ And from that hour the disciple took her into his own household” (John 19:25-27).

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“Faith is sight” (19th Century Rev. W. Jones).

 

What a simple, yet profound way to express what we have been grappling with.

 

The finite can never grasp the Infinite, but yet – He is still seen and heard. 

 

Indeed, the pure in heart see Him (Matthew 5:8), but does that include me? I profess and confess, yet still grapple with giving Him all. 

 

“Faith is sight.”

 

Okay. Not because of what I do, but because I’ve had a heart transplant that I am pure in heart. My old one has actually been exchanged for His, so that now my whole nature beats to His very own pulse (Ezekiel 36:26). 

 

His heart always sees God, although He is the One Who was previously unseen (Hebrews 11:27). Now I too have this option: that of faithing His viewpoint of the Invisible One (1 Timothy 1:17).

 

Corneas, pupils and irises. Active to a degree, but they weren’t made for intangible. They can’t help me focus on the dimension of the heavenly.

 

“Faith is sight.”

 

We know Christ “has seen the Father” (John 6:46). And gradually we discover that receiving an exchanged heart includes the organ of spiritual sight. Peering through the lens of Christ, we have our first glimpse of the Father. 

 

Timid as we may feel, He beckons us forward: “Come and you will see” (John 1:39). 

 

The world lost view some two thousand years ago, but we may still behold Him (John 14:19). The One Whose eyes never close stays wide-awake, ready to reveal Himself day or night according to our desire to see (Psalm 121:4).

 

Yes, “faith is sight.”

 

And because of it, we are drawn toward the eternal as a moth to the light. 

 

Faith flies to heaven’s open door and picks up everything with her name on it. She believes the promises are available to her personally, and pushes aside her inadequacies on the basis of this sight (Romans 4:19-20). After all, it’s not about her, but about Him.

 

The “faith that sees” takes what is offered, and without full comprehension, watches the intangible become tangible. This Spirit-viewing faith acquires the unseen and waits for its manifestation before her very eyes. 

 

Oh Father,

Faith is sight – a new way of seeing and perceiving all that You have planned for us. 

Faith is sight – but I find myself still looking at what my physical eyes see.

Faith is sight – so I ask that You continue to grant me clarity and teach me to use these spiritual eyes for Your glory.

Faith is sight – You’ve prepared things for me which my mind can’t even comprehend (1 Corinthians 2:9). Give me the endurance to stay focused on that which is unseen (Hebrews 11:27).

Faith is sight – useful not just for peering at You, but also for a seeing others as You see them (2 Corinthians 5:16).

May it be, Lord. May faith be my sight.

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Photo courtesy of Tom Clark