Through what lens are you looking?
One of the things that really breaks my heart is when the children of the Lord argues with one another. Some do not hesitate to take out others and do it in the Name of the Lord. But the worst thing is that we easily get into that mode too. One so easily criticizes someone else’s way of doing things, believing your way is the only way and the only truth. Just think back on what you recently said and thought about others.
Paul personally experienced his brothers’ opposition too 15It’s true that some here preach Christ because with me out of the way, they think they’ll step right into the spotlight.
I say again we should not be too quick to point fingers here. We easily comment on other people’s faith and way of doing things, as if we alone know the truth.
I’ve learnt some big lessons in this regard. I realised that I look at the Bible and faith through a specific lens. These lenses are like those of sunglasses. Sunglasses that prevent some rays from penetrating, while those that do penetrate fall on the retina of our eyes as a different colour. Therefore, the one wearing the sunglasses has a different perspective on reality. The world is actually not as green or brown as what the sunglasses make you believe.
I look at the Bible in the same way. My lenses were formed by my parents, the church in which I grew up, my friends, my family, where I now find myself in life, and much more. That is why you and I can look at the exact same piece of Scripture and see and understand something completely different.
We must realise that the Word of God are God’s words. It is a dynamic Word that people could not figure out for the past 2 000 years. It is a Godly Word and we are only human.
We must create space for one another and not be so quick to lift a finger and criticise. No, we must act like the other group in Paul’s life: 15But the others do it with the best heart in the world. One group is motivated by pure love, knowing that I am here defending the Message, wanting to help.
One group saw through their lens that Paul was a jailbird. The other group’s lens showed the picture of a man of God who was not afraid to speak up and spread the Gospel. The first group broke things through what they said and did, and the Gospel suffered. The second group gave strength and support, so much so that we can still learn from Paul and his letters today.
Come on, let’s learn this hard lesson from the people around Paul. Firstly, let’s realise that we look at the Word and at life through a lens. Let’s realise that we are looking at the same picture, but that our lens reflects a different image. Let’s give one another space. Let’s support one another, even though we are not living in the same place. Most of us have some part of the truth, and sometimes different parts of the same truth.
Let’s show the world how different people with different backgrounds looking through different lenses can take hands and support one another.
How big are the differences?
What does the picture look like through your lens?
Do you leave sufficient space for others?
Our Father in heaven, please help me to see through my own lens. Please help me to leave more space for others. Please help us to embrace one another despite our differences. Amen