Our stained view of the world...
For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
~ 1 Corinthians 13:12
This morning as I was brewing my cup of coffee, I was staring out the kitchen window as I often do, and found myself looking at the stained-glass window that hangs there. As I walked closer to look once again at this piece of art that I have had for nearly twenty years now, I began to look through the colors and thought of the old John Conlee song, "Rose Colored Glasses."
Like most country songs, it involves a man and a woman, and a relationship that just simply isn't working. In the lyrics, the man admits to looking at life through "rose colored glasses," which only allow for him to see the beauty of the woman, rather than looking at the truth of the relationship.
Funny how often we only see what we want, even when we know that things are different. You might even say that the stained-glass window I was looking through this morning, as it changed the colors of what I was seeing, was also teaching me at the same time.
You see, there are simply things in this world that keep us from seeing people as children of God. I might even go as far to say, our eyesight is stained, not by beautiful glass, but by how we are taught to look at the world. It is hard for us to see one another as being made in the image of God, when our image of one another is shaped by the very things that stains our image. Judgment, hatred, racism, as well as, love, beauty and hope, all are things that cause us to look at the world with the images that we have been taught to see.
The racist policeman cannot see the empty hands of the black man if he can only see the color of his skin. The man cannot see the amazing talent of a woman if he can't see beyond the skirt that she wears. The baker cannot celebrate the love of two people if he only focuses on the fact the couple getting married are gay. A woman anxiously sits in an airplane, all because the man across the aisle is wearing a turban.
These are all the things that have stained our ability to see one another as children of God.
The stained glass windows of a cathedral draw us in. As the sun moves across the sky, the images change, and their colors track it's progress. The light of Christ continues to shine on us, and invites us to look at the world God has created. The light is bright so that we can see things things clearly.
Matthew reminds us that we must take the plank from our own eyes before attempting to remove the speck of dust from our brother's, otherwise we become hypocrites. (Matthew 7:5)
Before we look at one another, let us remove the things that have stained our views of one another and the world, and let's try to look at the world with the eyes of Christ.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2019
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Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain at Essential Hospice, Webster, Texas, and is an ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.