“You believe because you can see me. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.” (John 20:29)

“…so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe…(Ephesians 1:18-19)

I’ve always wondered about that phrase, that image Paul uses, “The eyes of your heart…” the implication is that there’s a lot more having to do with seeing and sight than my eyes can handle. I wonder.

One of my most treasured old tomes is The Way of the World: Contemplative Reflections on the Gospels by Rev. William Martin, who was a pastor and spiritual director in the desert southwest. He writes simple poems leading to simple reflections. Yesterday I came to “Seeing and Believing”. Here it is:

There are two ways of seeing:

with the eyes, and with the heart.

Eyes respond to light waves

between 400 and 800 nanometers.

Most of the electromagnetic spectrum

lies outside of these boundaries,

and cannot be seen by eyes.

Only the heart has the capacity

to know beyond seeing.

Trust what the heart knows,

not the tiny bit the eyes see.

Wow! It’s good to know, and amazing that the ancients had a sense of this without the help of modern science. I’m thinking of the current worship song we often sing that goes like this:

Open the eyes of my heart, Lord

Open the eyes of my heart

I want to see you

I want to see you

It’s such an intriguing thought, but how? Like Nicodemus who’s wondering how in the world he can be born all over again, how can I open up wide the eyes of my heart? Is there a switch, or some thought process, or a certain prayer? I think not. It seems to be all bound up in this process of faith somehow, of relationship to the Creator who gives us eyes to see and as I’m learning hearts also to see with. I wonder how that works. What do you think?

“Seeing is believing” we say. Is that all there is to it? Or can we learn to trust what our hearts know and not just the tiny bits our eyes see?

Love From Here

Peter Hawkinson

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