I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which
he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people. Ephesians 1:18
Last Friday I did some (very) necessary housecleaning. The past few weeks have been really, really hot here in the Netherlands, not really temperatures to do a lot of cleaning. Bert and I only did the cleaning of our small chalet superficially… ‘the French way’ as we use to call it in the Netherlands. (No offense to our dear French friends for this Dutch expression; I have no idea where it comes from). Anyway, this week the temperature dropped a bit, so I decided to catch up with cleaning. I filled a bucket, pulled my sleeves up, put on a Spotify worship list and was happily singing along while doing my chores.
Open my eyes
I don’t know about you, but I love to worship while cleaning. Sometimes I forget the text, make up my own, or sing na-na-na with the music… it doesn’t matter. It makes me happy and I feel immense contentment. God is good, no matter what. And then it can happen that a simple worship song on a random list really enters so deep in your heart and soul that you just need to drop everything you’re doing and sit down, eyes closed in worship. That happened to me yesterday. I do hope you know this song… it’s an oldie: ‘Open the eyes of my heart, Lord, open the eyes of my heart, I want to see You, I want to see You. To see You high and lifted up, shining in the light of Your glory, pour out Your power and love as we sing holy, holy holy… I want to see You.’ And I started to pray… yes Lord, I want to see You… whatever happens in our world today, whatever circumstances we are in, I want to see You Lord.
I want to see You
Later on, when I was done cleaning, I sat down with my Bible and looked up the corresponding Scripture in Ephesians 1. Here the apostle Paul writes to the Ephesians how he prays the eyes of their hearts will be enlightened… What does it mean to have the eyes of our heart enlightened? We have our physical eyes, but what does it mean to pray ‘open the eyes of my heart Lord?’
Eyes of the heart
Actually, we do not only see the world around us with our physical eyes. Our heart has something to do with it as well. What do we allow to enter our heart? Doubt, fear, sin, or do we hold on to the promises of God? The way we determine what we see with our physical eyes is somehow linked with what we believe to be true in our heart. Let’s call that ‘our belief system.’ Proverbs 4 says to ‘guard your heart for everything you do flows from it.’ When fear and anxiety reign in our heart, it effects our belief system and that will also have an effect in the way we look at what is happening in the world.
When the eyes of our heart are enlightened, we know the hope to which He has called us.
We can read the newspaper, or follow the news on the Internet and be overwhelmed by all that is going on: wars, rumors of wars, death, disasters, climate change, you name it. When we only look at that with our physical eyes we can be worried to death, but when the eyes of our heart are enlightened, like Paul said, we know the hope to which He has called us. We have a bright future ahead of us, a glorious inheritance. But also now, in this life… Jesus told us not to worry about what to eat or what to wear. Moreover, He promised to never leave or forsake us. He wants to fill us with a peace that surpasses all understanding. That’s why we need to consciously guard our heart and focus with the eyes of our heart on the reality of that eternal truth that our Lord is Immanuel, God with us… no matter what!
Guard your heart
To guard our heart is not that we close ourselves off of all that is going on in the world. On the contrary, we are people with a glorious inheritance, a hopeful future. We can share that with people around us and proclaim the good news so they too can have eternal life. To guard our heart means that we see another truth, we see another reality with the eyes of our heart… it’s not there yet, but it will definitely come and already now this reality can fill our hearts with hope and peace and stability.
Do not worry
Are you afraid? Do you worry a lot about tomorrow, about the future of your loved ones? Don’t! There’s a proverb that says that worries about tomorrow will rob you from today’s peace. The God of heaven and earth has promised to never leave you, nor forsake you. Do you know Him? I really hope you do… and if not… please, don’t hesitate to come to Him. How? Just say out loud: ‘Lord I need You in my life!’ Talk with Him like you would talk to a good friend. He IS a good friend. He knows you
inside out. He is waiting for you with arms open wide. Maybe you don’t see it with your physical eyes, but there is more to His reality than meets the eye.
My prayer is that He will open the eyes of your heart. And in case you would like to talk about this some more… don’t hesitate to share with the people of She Rises. We want to be there for you.
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