Several weeks ago, I started praying that I would see people as God sees them. I would say it in my mind like a mantra. “Let me see people the way You see them.” Honestly, I was hoping for a cool story I could write about. Look! This situation was different because I asked that! Yay, God!
Since the idea has been running through my mind, it has seeped in the crevices. Where I may not have had compassion, I am more willing to see that person’s side. In place of judging them, I ache for them. For the choices they made. For the path they took that led them here. And, most of all, I hurt for the state of their heart.
There has not been an a-ha! moment of enlightenment over a single occurrence. No light bulb went off in a situation where I thought, “Hey, cool, maybe that is what Jesus would have done.” It is more like there has been a subtle shift going on in me. There is an understanding being built in my heart. Isn’t that better anyways? I would prefer a changed heart to a one time deal that I forget about.
Don’t get me wrong: I am still laughing at the silly or asinine things people say that I don’t agree with, instead of thinking through their view. I haven’t stopped judging those who are different quite yet. Judgments happen so fast that it takes a lifetime of training to stop. But I think I am on the right path.
From now on, I want to keep that prayer going. It is my reminder that there is a huge difference between how God our creator sees people and how I see them. With time and practice, that gap should get smaller. My compassion should grow and I should look deeper. My judgments will hopefully diminish as well as my attempts to brush the person away. Wounded, scared, angry, sad: whatever reason they are lashing out, I want to really see.
We can all use a sincere prayer like this: to have Jesus’ heart. He would prefer us crying with someone to us laughing at them. He wants us to remember that we are made in His image and so are they. Jesus would do anything or give anything to help them, and so should we.
Is this your prayer too?
Linking with Holley Gerth