Eternal Lens

• Jacqui Parker • July 28, 2020

I have a ‘B’ restriction on my Indiana Driver’s License. For those of you who are not visually challenged, you may not know this means that I must wear glasses or contacts when driving. I’ve worn glasses since elementary school which means I’ve been through the giant glasses of the 80s, the tiny glasses of the 90s, and the frameless, barely there, glasses that I wear today. If you wore glasses as a kid, you know the terrible pit of the stomach feeling when you broke or lost a pair and had to tell your parents. Hopefully they could be taped together until you could get a new pair, or you had to suffer a fuzzy world until they were replaced.

As I got older, I went from one pair of glasses to two – regular and reading. Then last year, I went from two to three – regular, reading, and computer. I just barely need regular glasses, so when I’m at home, I don’t typically wear any except when reading or using the computer. There has been quite an adjustment since I’ve started working from home as I find myself absentmindedly walking around with my reading or computer glasses on. I’ll often go outside to sit on my porch during a break from work not realizing I still have my glasses on. I’ll be looking around and the world doesn’t look quite right. It often takes me a minute to realize it’s because I’m wearing the wrong glasses.

This afternoon I was sitting outside checking my email and cruising Facebook with my reading glass on. After a while I put my phone down and was just enjoying the green of summer when I noticed everything looked blurry. Duh – I was still wearing my reading glasses. I took them off and thought to myself, “You don’t have to see the world through the wrong lenses.”

God spoke to me quietly in that moment. “What lenses are you using to see the world?” Of course, He didn’t mean literally what glasses are you wearing. He meant how are you seeing the world – through my lens or someone else’s?

I have to admit that lately I’ve been seeing the world through a lot of lenses that aren’t His. I’ve been looking at the world through the lens of fear. The lens of rejection. The lens of sorrow. I’m sure you know what I mean. The things that happen to us, the things that are happening around us can become the lens of how we see the world. We’ve all heard the phrase “looking at life through rose colored glasses”. I think lately it’s been easy to look at the world through red colored glasses of anger. Gray colored glasses of depression. Green colored glasses of envy. Midnight colored glasses of fear.

We all know that when something happens it can change the way we look at everything. When we are let down by someone we love and respect, we start looking at everyone as a potential let down. When we are rejected by those around us, we start looking for rejection everywhere we go. When we are lied to, we search for lies. When we immerse ourselves in stories of anger and fear, it’s easy to start feeling a constant level of anger and fear.

The world feels like a very scary place right now. Between a global pandemic, a contentious election season, and civil unrest, it’s easy to put on any glasses but rose-colored ones. However, God does not ask us to wear rose colored glasses. He wants us to wear glasses that are crystal clear – crystal clear to see who He is and what He’s doing. We remember that, don’t we? That God is always in control even when it seems like everything is out of control.

How do we trade in our shaded glasses for His crystal-clear ones? We have to immerse ourselves in who He is. There is nothing wrong with keeping abreast of the news, but are we spending more time focused on the news – reading, watching, and talking about it – than we are in studying God’s word, talking to Him, and talking about Him?

One of my favorite verses is Isaiah 41:28:

Do you not know?
    Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
    and his understanding no one can fathom.

I don’t understand what is happening in the whole world or even just in my little world. I am afraid. I am sad. I am frustrated. God is not magically removing the things that scare me, that hurt me, that frustrate me, but His understanding I cannot fathom. What I do know is that one of the ways I can put on His crystal-clear glasses is to remember that His plan includes me not just today in this world, but for eternity.

I think that’s one of the biggest things that gets in the way and causes us to put on the wrong glasses – we don’t have God’s viewpoint. We are finite. He is infinite. All we can truly understand is what we can experience in the here and now, and often that doesn’t feel so good. We know that’s going to happen because the Bible tells us over and over that we will have troubles. I don’t think any of us believe we’re going to get through life without them. But when it begins to feel like all we ever experience is trouble, we may start to question God’s unfailing love.

But, here’s great news. God’s love is unfailing, and when you have accepted Jesus as your savior, it means that you will be in God’s unfailing love FOR ALL ETERNITY. Our finite brains can hardly begin to understand, but our lives here are just a tiny, tiny moment when compared to all eternity. This world is not as it should be. The moment sin entered because of God’s wonderful gift of free will, the world was no longer as it should be. But God is working His plan to restore it. One day it will be as it should be.

Today, put on your eternal glasses. Remember that until Christ returns and restores the way it should be, we are moving towards it. Every day it gets closer. Every trouble intensifies our ache for our Father and our eternal home. Allow every trouble, every fear, every sorrow to drive you closer to Him. Spend time every day in the Word. Spend time every day in worship. Spend time every day in intentional prayer. Seek the Lord. Ask Him what you can do today in your reality to find peace. To find joy. To find satisfaction. Cast every care on Him, and even though He may not remove it, He will sustain you through it until you leave this finite world to bask in His unending love for eternity.