Allow me to introduce you to That Dog (seen above). He’s that dog I didn’t want, that dog who didn’t behave like I wanted, that dog that wasn’t this dog:
This dog isn’t our dog. We simply get to enjoy her company when her family travels. This dog is the most perfect dog I’ve ever known. This was the kind of dog I wanted, but didn’t get. Yet, That Dog is rapidly becoming our dog, not just his (the husband’s) dog. And that dog is winning his way into my heart.
For me, That Dog has come to represent the people who challenge us, who rub against and frustrate us. I’m sure I fall into this category for some people. It’s these people I’d like you to think about as your read this post, for God has two specific things to say to us about them.
Concerning all people, God says: I don’t see things the way you see them. You look at and judge by outside appearances, but I look at the heart (from 1 Samuel 16:7).
For the person with whom you struggle, ask God to give you His eyes to see the beauty inside them. Ask Him to give you a glimpse at the needs He sees within their heart. I did this recently and was blessed by what God showed me. He showed me how to pray. He enabled me to love. And the fact that God enables us to supernaturally love someone absolutely blows me away.
Concerning other believers, God says: From now on, no longer regard anyone according to the flesh (from 2 Corinthians 5:16).
The flesh refers to our sinful nature. It’s the nature that in the eyes of God “has gone” — it simply no longer exists in the lives of His children:
“If anyone is in Christ they are a new creation, the old has gone, the new has come” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
God calls us to believe that truth about ourselves — no matter the sin with which we still struggle. He calls us to believe it about other people as well. He wants us to see people according to their new nature, to see them as already complete in Christ.
How we see people is so important:
“The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness” (Matthew 6:22-23).
Our “eye sight” determines whether our words or attitudes toward people are God-glorifying. It determines whether they see an accurate reflection of God in our lives.
Imagine if you only saw people as God sees them. Talk about freedom — freedom for them and freedom for you. Imagine the love that would flow through you. Think of the compassion and mercy that would pour out of you. Imagine the difference you’d make in their life. Practice Way #22 of 52 Ways to Glorify God and you won’t have to imagine this anymore. You’ll be living it. You’ll bring great glory to God as you:
See others with the eyes of Jesus
And because I cringe when people post unflattering pictures of me, here’s a more flattering picture of That Dog, our dog, Deuce: