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The Power of Seeing Another Through Christ’s Eyes

There’s someone in my life I’ve struggled to forgive, wrestled with my own bouts of criticism, condemnation and frustration toward. It’s not a pretty thing to know you have unkind feelings toward someone. It’s not who I want to be. I want to be Christ-like, loving and forgiving. Gritting my teeth and forcing myself to be that way doesn’t quite seem like the same thing.

Jesus never seemed to be straining to forgive, never had to bite his lip and fight back a nasty comment. Those ugly dark things weren’t inside Him to begin with. It dawned on me that if I could see this other person through Christ’s eyes, perhaps I could have those natural feelings of unconditional love and compassion. Maybe the irritation would melt away and be replaced with God’s love.

Jesus Christ - Cristus statueThis morning I woke early and decided to use the time in those peaceful quiet hours to ask the Lord for the ability to see this person through His eyes. In my mind, He took me to a beautiful beach and had me take a seat on a log facing the crashing waves. He knelt in front of me, His hand on my shoulder, looking me in the eye. His were filled with infinite compassion and understanding.

He let me express the deepest desires of my heart — who I long to be, the type of person I want to be, free of these negative emotions, free to escape this cage I feel like I’m living in. It’s as if there’s this passionate ball of love and light that’s crying to break free and express herself but she keeps bumping up against negative limitations.

“If this person wasn’t in my life,” I heard myself telling Him, “I could be a good person.”

I could see the twinkle in His eye and knew immediately how foolish that statement was. It isn’t this person “making me have bad thoughts.” The propensity to be critical, condemning and judgmental is already there.

This person is in my life to give me a chance to overcome these feelings. They are a gift to help me eliminate the black blobs that are stuck to my glowing ball of light.

“How do I get rid of this negativity? Please take these thoughts and feelings away from me,” I pleaded. “Can I just give them to you? I would give away all my sins to know your thoughts, to be as loving as You are.”

Again I asked to see this person through Christ’s eyes. If there were some way to do that, perhaps all the resentment and bitterness would melt away.

At that moment, a situation from my past when I’d done something particularly bad came to mind. All the feelings of guilt and shame returned. It was a sin I’d already repented of, but the memory returned. After that event I’d felt despair and depression for quite some time. It was a dark time for me that I had no desire to revisit.

“That,” Christ explained, “Is how {this person} feels — all the time.”

“Oh my, really?” I remembered how immobilized I felt in that period of my life. I remembered feeling worthless, despondent and as if there was no use trying to do anything. It was a horrible, debilitating feeling.

“You experienced this for a short season until you received My forgiveness. Imagine it stretching on for years. What might you have become?”

I then understood how and why this person acts the way they do, why they’d become contracted and limited in their abilities. Why they responded to me the way they did for so many years, and much more. All in an instant, everything became clear.

And then Christ said, “Do you want to see how I see this person?”

“Yes, I do.”

He showed me a beautiful young person, long before the mistakes had draped them in a dark heavy cloud of guilt and shame. This shining valiant individual with a future so bright and promising stood before me. And I began to weep. This was the beauty beneath all the rubble.

Instantly I felt Christ’s love for this person flowing through me, and I felt such an overwhelming need to apologize for being so blind for so long. I had belittled, condemned, judged and criticized a fallen warrior, lying helpless, bleeding on the side of the road. I had not reached forth a loving hand. I had not dressed this person’s wounds. I had not given them a hug of comfort or kindness.

All I had seen was how their actions affected me. All I saw was how my life wasn’t as ideal and beautiful as I wanted it to be — even craved and needed it to be. I was too concerned with my rights, my needs, what “I deserved.”

And then Christ’s question came, “Will you help this person?”

“I will.”

“You may not see results right away.” He cautioned. “You may never see them at all.”

“I understand.”

“It’s not about them changing. It’s about you becoming.”

“Yes, I understand, Lord. Where do I begin?”

“Why don’t you just start with a hug.”

11 Responses to “The Power of Seeing Another Through Christ’s Eyes”

  • Marnie,
    I am in tears! I’ve been through situations like this and have been given the opportunity to try and look from their point of view, but I’ve never had an experience like this. I long to. Your sharing has helped me feel like I was there, too, and this could have as easily been me if I had asked. ;o)

    With some of the things I have been through, one of my great lessons has been trying to see others as Christ sees them. The very end of your article is exactly why my site is called all about becoming. I have learned to look at others as people with great potential and divine nature– who are all becoming who they were meant to become. Some of us get stopped up or slowed down, but if we keep at it, we truly can become all that the Father sees in us. Sometimes we just need someone else to believe in us when we can’t.

    This is SO beautiful. I am going to share it with everyone I know!
    Thank you! Thank you! You are beautiful and amazing! Blessed to know you!

  • Thank YOU, Denise. I love this comment of yours: “Some of us get stopped up or slowed down, but if we keep at it, we truly can become all that the Father sees in us. Sometimes we just need someone else to believe in us when we can’t.” I needed to hear that! It’s time I started believing in this person.

  • Euna:

    Marnie,
    What a helpful article. It brought to my memory a time when I had a similiar situation. I knew I should love everyone as Christ did and yet I didnt’ see them in the fullnes of Light. I,m happy to say that I too am delivered from the inability to find peace around the person who was a constant source of hurt to me. When I called on God to help me He actually answered me in a dream about the person involved and I never thought or felt the same about that person. It is so awsome how God gets us through life. Maybe we do need to share these victories more. Thank you!

  • Amy:

    Marnie,

    Thank you for this! As someone who has struggled with depression on and off most of my life, I can tell you empathy is somehow the connecting factor. It is because of my struggles that I am moved by the “lowest of the low”. Somehow having someone “down in the trenches” opens up the path to walk out. I believe this is part of why the Savior went to the darkest places of all in His life and Atoning sacrifice.

    “How much easier to follow and love that leader who has felt all that we have felt and more-who not only sympathizes, but EMPATHIZES with our cause. Even though the Savior may have known all things in the Spirit, even the travails of the flesh, that fact that he took upon him a body of flesh and bones, and thereafter suffered the indignities of man, increases both our affection for him and our ability to identify with him.

    G.K. Chesterton noted: ‘No mysterious monarch, hidden in his starry pavilion at the base of the cosmic campaign, is in the least like that celestial chivalry of the Captain who carries his five wounds in the front of the battle’ It is such a ‘wounded’ leader we are fortunate to have. It is such a wounded leader who succors our wounds.” Tad Callister (The Infinite Atonement)

  • How wonderful Marnie that you had the grace to ask Jesus to help you with this. I had a relationship like this with my mother in law. But by the time I realized that she was in my life to teach me something, the exact thing that this person taught you – how to see someone through Christ’s eyes and how to love someone that sometimes makes things difficult and is not easy to love and that other people stay away from because of this, it was too late. She passed away a few years ago and it’s too late now for me to give her a hug and tell her that I love her and that I’m sorry for the way I treated her sometimes.

    But good news for me and for others like me who found out too late, I can pray for her soul and for God to give her the grace to enter into his kingdom. And the day will come when I can ask her forgiveness.

  • Caiman:

    Thank you for sharing your personal and beautiful experience. I love it when you get personal as it touches my life and helps me to see things in a different perspective. Thanks Marnie you are truly a special daughter of God

  • Karen:

    Thank you! I had previously been struggling with feelings of anger due to my mother never having loved me and retaining her bitterness and anger toward me up to her passing. I couldn’t understand as a child why she would feel this way towards me with no provocation on my part. A few months ago it it came to me that it had nothing to do with me and more to do with how unhappy and bitter she was with her own life. I looked at her life through her eyes and how I’m sure as a young woman she had dreams of how her life would be. It was far from what anyone would want with an abusive, narcissist husband (my father). I was just an easy target. I can now understand and forgive. Thank you for confirming and reminding me this is how Jesus would also see it.

  • Newton:

    Thank you very much for this message.We are forgiven to forgive,accored mercy that we may b merciful to others.

  • Judith:

    Dear Marnie,
    Marnie, you have just described my situation, thank you for sharing this, i want to see others through Jesus’ eyes, if not i keep making mistakes, and those mistakes depresses me and make ashamed. Thank you. I will not rest until i become more and more like Jesus. God bless.

    Judith. UK

  • Joseph Nwokonta:

    Lord, help me to see exactly the way you see, think and act. I have been so judgemental, this piece has opened my eyes. It seemed as if I have been blind all these while. Thanks very much. God bless.

  • Cynthia:

    Marnie, thank you so much. I have needed to forgive someone for so long. Now, I think I can! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

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