Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Distorted Vision

      A recent examination of my son’s eyes revealed they weren’t working as designed. The esotropia that had been diagnosed as a child was subtly plaguing him. His right eye was turning in while reading. Like a hidden pest, it was unseen to the onlooker and doctors, for years.

     All this time I thought his vision was OK. After all the doctors told me all was well. I know it’s had an affect on him, though he has spoken little of how he feels. My heart struggles to reconcile his loss over the years.

     Sounds like my life’s story. I accepted Jesus’ offer for life and was doing my best to grow & learn. But I had a vision problem. I couldn’t see myself the way God saw me.

     I really identify with the Prodigal Son story. There are 3 sons in the parable. The first son is a slave to love. He’s telling the story. He sees clearly and knows His identity with His Father. The second son is a slave to sin. He doesn’t see his place with the Father. He doesn’t see the Father for who He is. He wants to forget his heritage and go after things he believes will fulfill him. He is more geared to indulgent living, numbing out with things that feel good. The third son is a slave to earning. He sees his place with the Father being dependent on what He can do for Him. If he can work hard maybe it will be enough to find his place with the Father. He spends his days as a reliable worker striving in the fields , hoping his efforts will take him into the Father’s embrace. I identify the most with him.

     The Father shows the perfect picture of how our God sees. When he sees his son on the horizon returning to love, He runs to meet him pulling him into His embrace. He doesn’t care what he’s done, he only wants to restore him to his place. As the older son watches, he is tormented. He sees that no matter how hard he worked he’s still outside the Father’s embrace, while his brother just enters in.

     Angry, he approaches the Father with his complaints and hears, “You are always with me and all that I have is yours”. The Father was telling him, “All I’ve ever wanted to do was love you, but you’ve been too busy out in the fields trying to earn my love.” “Just enter in as you are.”

     Few of us live in the embrace of the Father’s love, like Jesus. Many live as the older brother, uncomfortable with who we are. Working for God makes us feel worthy & significant. Since we look through distorted vision, we don’t see what the Father sees in us. We see ourselves through eyes of the flesh, seeing the weaknesses, sin and shame. Because our perception is altered, we think he sees us the way we see ourselves.

     Papa God sees us through eyes of love. His vision of us is as ones perfectly restored. The Father wants to reprogram our minds, telling us of His perception of us. He wants to show us what we look like through His eyes. He wants us to come as we are and let Him reveal to us who He made us to be. It’s not how He views us that is our problem. It’s how we view ourselves.

     So, which son are you? Are you comfortable in the love of the Father and who you are to him? What would happen if you left the fields of your efforts and entered in as you are? Does it feel easier to earn the Father’s love?

     My son’s issue is not his eyes. It’s the programming that tells his eyes how to work. Once his mind is reprogrammed the way it was meant to be his eyes should work together as God designed.

     How is your vision? Is it clear? Can you see how intimately and desperately you are loved? It’s in knowing who you are that you can be who He meant you to be. Can you see Him running out to pull you into His embrace? Can you see yourself through His perfect vision

©copyrighted 2008 by Julie L. Todd


Laura said... Reply to comment

Hi, Julie! This is so sweet...One of my most earnest prayers has always been to "give me eyes to see the way You do, Lord". Our spiritual vision is so important, isn't it? Thank you for helping me improve mine!! And also thank you for agreeing to help me with the healing process. I think I will wait until school is out to start the letters...

Gretchen said... Reply to comment

Loved it, Love. xxxooogretchen

MandyMom.com said... Reply to comment

I commented at HOTM, but I just wanted to mention here as well that I LOVE this post! :)

MandyMom.com said... Reply to comment

I feel the same way sometimes, but I love to write, so I continue to, and probably would even if no one read (and I'm sure there are posts that go unnoticed, but well, that's life).

Laura's comment here reminds me of a point in my life where, coming from a false religion where I read the bible and was told that "it meant such-in-such", I pleaded with God to help me see the bible through his eyes, and to clear away my preconceived ideas of what verses and chapters meant and to reveal complete truth to me as I read his Word. He blew my mind, thats for sure!

MandyMom.com said... Reply to comment

That's wonderful! Congratulations on 16 years of homeschooling! My story is actually the opposite. I was a public school kid who became a homeschooler my final year of school... I really enjoyed it and was able to combine my jr and sr year into one year (actually, into half a year.. since I hadn't taken many electives during my time in highschool and only had a few more subjects to go to complete my college requirement to go to a local community college).

I know keeping up with several blogs can be quite a task. I'm also honored that HOTM asked me to write for them on a monthly basis- and it was awesome to see it form and grow. I know God has wonderful things planned for it!

Laura said... Reply to comment

Hey, Julie! Thanks for your comment...it makes me feel a little less lonely when I hear stories of others who have similar testimonies. God bless you and your husband for taking this couple under your wing. I am almost jealous of them! You are a true jewel.

Robyn said... Reply to comment

Tuesday, the day you posted this, my 19 month son had eye surgery. In the six months we have known about the muscular problems in his eyes (compromised vision), I have seen so many parallels of how I don't see God in so many areas. My focus gets distorted and I get off track. It's funny how God teaches us such big lessons through something as small as our children's eyes, isn't it?

Loved the post over on Heart of the Matter. I hope you are having a great weekend!!

Bev Brandon said... Reply to comment

slave to love
slave to sin
slave to earning...
the way you posted that was so full of wisdom...
may our beautiful God continue to open the eyes of our hearts to want HIM more than any approval, any contract, anything...you have such a beautiful way of putting things and putting HIM first

Heather@Mommymonk said... Reply to comment

Hey, your article about vision kind of fits in with my devo about blogging purpose today. :) I think I have to be honest with myself about my purposes sometimes. I want to be wholeheartedly doing it for Him and for the joy of it, but I get caught up sometimes in doing it for approval and praise. Yes, I want to be a writer and get published, but again, why? To glorify God with my words. I have to keep returning to that purpose!

Sharon said... Reply to comment

What a sweet post. I am sorry about your son's vision. I just prayed for him. I pray that his vision can be repaired. Thank you for visiting my blog, you have a very lovely blog!

Hugs, Sharon

Michelle Bentham said... Reply to comment

Thank you for visiting both blogs and leaving such sweet words of encouragment. They mean the world to me and I know they are from the Lord. I am so blessed to have women like the faithful bloggers who have come and visited me over the months and spoken into my life. I am greatly encouraged and anticipating a new season with the LORD. Bless You.

Amy said... Reply to comment

Julie, wonderful article. I am sorry to hear about your son's vision. I will be praying for your family. It is hard when our children have difficulties. Praise God for his faithfulness to us in our time of need. Blessings to you.

Tiffany Stuart said... Reply to comment


Again you write with passion and the love of Papa. I loved reading your heart. I relate to all the sons during different seasons of my life. Three sons: amazing insight.

I am sorry about your son's vision. Sounds like if I understood right he can learn to reprogram his eye. Hope that is the case.

Anyway, please keep writing and sharing. You inspire me to know His love more and more.

Hugs from Colorado,