Ask for God Eyes {The Grove: Colorful}

I walked down the road awhile before it dawned on me what an odd sight it was to see a dozen dead de-feathered ducks dangling in the tree outside our Beijing apartment building.

I distinctly remember asking myself a few blocks down the road, “That was weird, right?”

Sadly, the longer we live in a place with different customs and ways of doing the things of life, the less the uniqueness of our surroundings intrigue us. “Amazing” becomes ordinary. “Wow” turns into ho hum. “Hilarious” is hardly noticed.

I doubt you would consider your life dull. But how easy it is to get caught up with the drab busy everyday and miss the brilliant color of this crazy, wonder-filled world we live in. Whether you live in a city, desert, village, town, prairie, beach, mountain, jungle, or on a ship, there’s something to inspire an “awe” near you this very moment. God didn’t skimp on color and texture in the details! He takes pleasure in your delight in His mystery and creativity in the place and people around you.

When did you last stop to take a good look and soak in the color of your life?

We can see millions of variations of color but our eyes have only three types of color receptor cones. When you look at an object, the spectrum of light reflected off the object hits those receptors and the color you see is actually the code the receptors send to your brain. In other words, you see a ripe lime as green because your brain interprets the particular light wavelength combinations reflected off the lime as green.

So literally, color is all about perception – how your brain translates what your eye receptors experience.

Kind of like life, right? Our perception of our circumstances is dependent on how our brain translates whatever we are experiencing. We understand life according to our interpretation of what is happening around us.

Adventure, love, fun, and companionship add color to life. Sorrow, anxiety, pain, and fear drain the color out.

But if you could see your circumstances with God-eyes, how would your perspective change? If you knew what He knows, how would the black and white of good and bad take on different hues and shades of meaning?

The concepts in the following passages only make sense when you see your circumstances from God’s perspective: (James 1:2-4; 2 Corinthians 4:16-18; 1 Peter 4:12-14; 2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

Consider it pure joy when you face trials of various kinds.

Rejoice if you share in Christ’s sufferings.

Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.

I delight in weaknesses, insults, hardships, and difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

The receptors in God’s eyes translate difficulties as opportunities to strengthen you, transform you, complete you, grow you up, and give you access to His undiluted glory. Whatever you are experiencing, it is not random but is preparing you and creating opportunity for you to experience and reflect Him more intensely. He is using hardship to stretch your capacity to contain the treasure of His fullness. The dark hues deepen the vivid undertones of the radiance of His glory.

I wonder what color glory is? What color is fullness? Strength? Joy? I imagine a radiant rainbow far more vibrant and full than what our earthly eyes can see. When we fix our eyes on what is unseen, what God-colors open up?

Boldly ask for God eyes. Whether light trickles or floods in, may you experience the God-colors around you and see what He sees. May you pause and enjoy the wonder-filled glorious life you live.

How might seeing with God’s eyes change your perspective?

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Now it’s your turn to share here at The Grove.  Join us in the comments. Link up your own blog posts and share your Instagram pics with #velvetashescolorful. A favorite photo will be reposted on Velvet Ashes’ Instagram and featured in our weekend “Have You Seen?” post.  See detailed instructions here.

13 Comments

  1. Michele July 7, 2016

    Have you seen the videos going around lately that show people with color blindness trying on these cool new glasses that help them see color? They all end up in tears, overwhelmed with what they’ve been missing. This just reminded me of that, and how overwhelming it is when you see the beauty around you for the first time or the first time in a long time. Thanks for the reminder to ask God for eyes that really perceive!

      1. Patty Stallings July 7, 2016

        Wow, I have goosebumps watching people experience color for the first time! Thanks, Amy and Michele!

    1. Michele Womble July 8, 2016

      What a picture of what it is going to be like when we can, at last really SEE! – and no longer through a glass darkly…

      1. Patty Stallings July 8, 2016

        YES!

  2. Betty Draper July 7, 2016

    Perspective is everything in all phases of life. What ever is going on in my life can make the colors either fade, become sharp, distant, too close, wavy, dull, and with God’s eyes beautiful. We spent this past few days meeting with several overseas workers, one single gal home for medical see gray because the doctors want her to not go back overseas. One couple were seeing mixed colors due to have to come home for a sick father. One couple was seeing bright colors, excited over what God had in store for their future. There are days I long for the time all colors will be clear and bright. Good post.

    1. Patty Stallings July 8, 2016

      Betty, I love the way you described what people were experiencing through color. Some day we are going to see all the colors God used to express the beautiful painting of our story.

    2. Michele Womble July 8, 2016

      interesting, Betty, the way we see – or don’t see – the colors in our lives – that we can see them as gray or faded – or bright – and yet for God the colors are not gray or faded in any of the situations – He sees it so differently – (like you said in your post (the link-up) – He is not afraid or worried ) so when we see things gray or faded or mixed we need to ask Him for His eyes to see – at least a little more – things the way He sees them. The colors are there and beautiful, even when we can’t process them that way.

  3. Laura July 8, 2016

    Thank you for this timely article. God knows what we need! Where we live in row of six little 2-storey semi-detached house, in a developing area of a city, all the other buildings around are much taller – 8, 10, 12, 16 storeys, plus railways. I have struggled to accept the greys of concrete and constant construction for the two-plus years we lived here so far. We have two more to go before our home assignment and finally I felt I was coping. We have no garden but we have enjoyed planting a few boxes to grow flowers and tomatoes against our wall and this year they are bringing special joy. Yesterday I woke to the sound of clanking scaffolding and major drilling, and learned that a twelve storey apartment block is going up in the one space that allowed a little morning sun to come and nourish our plant boxes, lighten our room and help dry our laundry. I felt like Jonah, angry that the one little bit of relief is no longer going to be there, but I know I have no right to be angry. I needed to read this and need to pray that I will see things with His eyes, and find, or recreate color in new ways.

    1. Michele Womble July 8, 2016

      oh Laura, I feel what you are saying. It was hard for me to get used to the grays and browns – and was a relief when winter white came and covered it all up (but then the white – beautiful and sparkly at first – would get gray, too and lasted forever) – and we had the same experience of a very tall building going up right out our window where there had once been more green – they tore down trees and moved playground equipment and dug a huge hole, built a concrete wall around it…and then stopped construction – for ten years. It was hard to know whether to be thankful that the building didn’t go up, or to wish that it would go up…I mean, a concrete wall and a huge hole outside the window…also not good. In the end they did build that building – and it ended up not being too bad – didn’t block as much sun as we thought it would – but, it is still there. Praying for you that God would give you color (in the new building maybe?) – and that if it does block all your sun, maybe you will be able to find colorful plants that don’t need as much…
      and – well, I think it’s ok to be a little angry that the relief is gone – as long you turn the anger in the right direction. May our anger over the lack of color in our world inspire us to look for ways to create color with Him and to pray for – and help – others to find color in Him.

    2. Patty Stallings July 8, 2016

      Laura, thank you so much for sharing your story with us.
      The drilling! Oh, the drilling! It’s my least favorite part of living in a concrete apartment building. May you experience an extra measure of grace for the new construction .
      I love how you found ways to bring life and color to the place you live. We will be trusting with you for our Father to fill you with creativity and a vision for ways to make this life sustainable – even with the construction and drilling!

  4. Michele Womble July 8, 2016

    “I wonder what color glory is?” so Beautiful, Patty. I wonder, too. Asking for God eyes to see the “colors” around us – the things that we’ve gotten used to and no longer “see” and yet – still cry out glory whether we would see it or not…but let us see it ask for eyes to see – that we might cry out “glory”, too.

    1. Patty Stallings July 8, 2016

      Amen, Michele! May we all experience a wider spectrum of God colors!

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