Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Open my eyes that I may see.

I read a book recently that hit me right between the eyes. I often hesitate to recommend a book because it really depends where you are when you read it.  For me...this book...at this time in my life...was life changing.

Through the Eyes of A Lion by Levi Lusko.

One of the parts that brought me to tears early in the book was when he said to put the book down and go look at the sky.  I was reading outside, on the deck, at about 11 am.  So...I did. I felt a little odd doing it but...I did it.  And of course...I saw a clear blue sky.

I sat back down to read the book.  He asked if I saw hundreds of stars.  Hmmmm..no.  Not quite.  But then he went on to say that just because I didn't see hundreds of stars...doesn't mean they weren't there.

That's all it took for me. Everything hit me right there.  I got the point. I knew what he was saying and it hit me right where I needed it.

The heart.

Later that night I came outside. I stood on the same spot on the deck and looked up to the same sky. It was amazing. Stars as far as I could see. And I suddenly flashed back to a few hours earlier when I was standing there looking at a clear blue sky.

Same sky. Same stars. One time I saw them, another time I didn't. They were always there.

I ran to get my Bible and read one of my favorite stories.

Elisha Traps Blinded Arameans

Now the king of Aram was at war with Israel. After conferring with his officers, he said, “I will set up my camp in such and such a place.”
The man of God sent word to the king of Israel: “Beware of passing that place, because the Arameans are going down there.” 10 So the king of Israel checked on the place indicated by the man of God. Time and again Elisha warned the king, so that he was on his guard in such places.
11 This enraged the king of Aram. He summoned his officers and demanded of them, “Tell me! Which of us is on the side of the king of Israel?”
12 “None of us, my lord the king,” said one of his officers, “but Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel the very words you speak in your bedroom.”
13 “Go, find out where he is,” the king ordered, “so I can send men and capture him.” The report came back: “He is in Dothan.” 14 Then he sent horses and chariots and a strong force there. They went by night and surrounded the city.
15 When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” the servant asked.
16 “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”
17 And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lordopened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.
The angels were there.  The whole time. But until Gehazi's eyes were opened...he couldn't see them. 

In a practical every day way, this helped me so much a few days ago.  As most of you know, I hate to fly. Like...really hate to fly.  But if I can see down...I fly much better. In a cloud? I feel totally claustrophobic and it's ... not good.  Well...we had zero visibility.  And this all came back to me.  Janice...the stars are right there...the lights below are right there.  It's all there. Just because you can't see it...it's still there. And in a moment the sky instantly cleared and I could see above and below.  To all nearby passengers I looked a little crazy as I was smiling from ear to ear (still with white knuckles) looking out the window.  

Then there's the moment where I was trapped.  In a situation so dreadful I've never even feared it.  Yes...it's that bad.  And as I'm hearing the most horrific things said and slung about the room...my heart pounding out of my body...I was trying so hard not to let emotion win...

but it did.

And the tears came and I couldn't stop them. And in this situation, in this place...in this moment... I DID NOT WANT TO CRY.  Over and over and over my mind prayed "open my eyes that I may see". Ahh...to see an army of angels swarming around that room would have changed everything.  I don't think the smile made it to my lips but inside it was actually starting to form in my heart. Just because I couldn't see them...didn't change a thing.  

They were there.

Where are you? I know. Not in the dreadful situation we are in. And I'm so very glad.  I wouldn't wish this on anyone.  But wherever you are...in whatever hard you are facing...perhaps you needed to read this.  

Just because you can't see Him...doesn't mean He's not there.

He is there. 

In fact...He promises to never leave. Never forsake. 


Though I was feeling like the plane was out of control and going the wrong direction and all was lost (yes..I know. It's an awful way to fly!)...the stars were still there. The city lights below. It was just a cloud.  It blocked my view but didn't change where I was.  The stars weren't any further away.  

When your life is going awesome...God is no closer. Or to state as well often feel...when you are in the valley of the shadow of death...God is not far away. Heaven is not silent.   In fact Psalm 34:18 states: 
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

I get it.  I do.  I get faith being an active choice.  I do.  But oh to have our eyes opened. And see what's really happening. To see the army there and ready.  

Open my eyes...that I may see.


  1. Always happy to hear from you, Janice. I've checked on you several times over the past week, as you've been on my heart. Thank you for reminding me to open my eyes.

    "Open the eyes of my heart, Lord, I want to see you."

    Hugs to you, Janice.

    Lastly, this song comes to mind when I think of your current situation... "In the eye of storm, You remain in control... In the middle of the war, You guard my soul. You alone are the ANCHOR when my sails are torn, Your love surrounds me, in the eye of the storm."
    -Ryan Stevenson

    May you find comfort in Him... Our Anchor.

    Love to you from our new home in Mississippi. ❤️

  2. Beautiful and encouraging words. Ever since meeting your lovely family while I was volunteering at Give Kids the World, I have been reading your blog. I only volunteer there once a year and not even every year. So it couldn't have been a coincidence that I met your family that day. Next month, my wife and I and our three biological children (7, 5, and 4) will be traveling to Colombia to adopt two sisters (16 and 14). Thank you for being open and honest and speaking truth and life by your words. I have been encouraged by them and I am sure I will be throughout our new journey that we are beginning. Praying for your family.

    1. Thank you for reaching out! A huge congrats to you and your wife on this big change! Would love to hear more about your story!

    2. Thanks! Here is the website that tells a very small bit of our adoption story. You and others at our church have inspired us through your stories and seeing the gospel lived out through adoption. We are looking forward to seeing what God does!


  3. Selena congrats on your move! How exciting! Thank you my sweet friend for being such an encourager through this valley. You know that's a gift of yours, right? You should. XO

  4. Beautiful words! I only know you from your blog but you have been on my heart and in my prayers. I don't know the trial that your family is facing but I know we serve a big God and He is in control. Continued prayers!

    1. Thank you, yes He is. Even in the darkest storm.