Eyes Wide Open

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Bent over Jesus, John the Baptizer plunged his cousin into the waters of the Jordan. Although the eccentric evangelist had been preaching and immersing disciples for some time, John must have sensed today’s difference. The God Who sent him to baptize had also briefed him about the coming One, recognized by the sign of a dove.

Clothed with his trademark camel’s hair and leather, John lifted the soaked Man from the river’s flow. As Jesus emerged in humility, the Spirit descended in glory. All heaven broke loose as a singular ray of light tore open the sky. This was not a mere break in the clouds but a manifestation of the invisible realm in undeniable clarity. 

For a moment, the noise of the earthly lay hushed in stunned silence. As if he had been seeing through a gauzed blindfold, John could suddenly see with blinding insight. While heaven tore open his mind, he stared with eyes wide open at this Man he thought he’d known all his life. Remarkable,” John whispered as his perception focused on this other realm. “He existed before I was born.” 

As the Baptist fell to his knees, Jesus Christ rose to glimpse Home. This was a place the Son of God knew, longed for, and often thought about. Thousands upon thousands of angels peered earthward, as surprised with their perspective, as John was of his. The throne, sky-blue like a sapphire, stood in stark contrast with the halo of emerald that surrounded it. Pouring out from under this Merciful Seat flowed a sea of crystal glass that reflected every blinding bolt of lightning.  

Jesus’ eyes met those of the four creatures before the throne. While the Baptist averted his eyes, Jesus smiled with warmth and affection. He knew their service to His Father as they shared His insight into time completed and yet to come. 

In the center of all, His Father, this Ancient of Days, sat upon His cathedra, ablaze with flames of love. Instantaneously, Father and Son locked eyes then, as if drawn with the magnetism of ardor, the Great I Am rose to His Feet

Glory, apparent yet heretofore unrecognizable, descended like a holy mist between dimensions. As the Spirit passed through the earthly portal, this Holy Vapor clothed Himself with the humility of a soft grey dove. The Holy Wind took wings of down and feathers to alight the shoulders of the drenched Man.

My Son,” echoed the Father. “You are the pride and delight of My Life. Oh, how I love You.”

The portal into the heavenlies froze open briefly, then the vision closed. Senses reeling, the Baptizer turned to look at the Man beside him in the water. With John’s face open toward Messiah, a new baffling understanding began to form in the desert prophet’s mind. Envisioning heaven’s reality had expanded his own purpose into greater clarity. 

As the Spirit took wing into the wilderness, John watched his Savior go but did not follow. John’s gritty ambition had a new resolve. He must step aside while this Bridegroom went to prepare for His bride. He, the maverick messenger, must merely await His return.