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Training your heart to see

Mike Connell

She's prayed and prayed and prayed and God doesn't seem to have heard. Then her son, her hope of a future dies. It's a shock to her. All of her hope, her dreams taken away in a moment of time; no one to support her, sustain her, so she's following her son. Her heart is broken. As you look you can sense and feel the grief, tremendous grief. A woman with no inheritance, no future, no hope, walking her second journey to the burial ground to put her son beside her husband, knowing when she comes home there's no one to come home to. Feel the grief. Let your imagination, heart open up to let the Holy Spirit show you this person who's lost all hope of the future, the hope of a next generation rising to support, all gone; hope of her son to care for her in her old age, all gone. As you look you can't help but think of when your dream was taken away, when your hope was dashed. Perhaps right now as you're looking at that picture and see her just think oh, so it's not just about her. In some ways that's you too.

Did something valuable in your life seem to be taken away? Allow yourself to feel her grief, the grief of having the hope of your future taken away. What does Jesus do? He's moved with compassion. Place yourself just where the woman is, seeing the crowd coming towards them. She doesn't even know who He is and what He can do - but He sees her, just like He sees you and His heart is moved with compassion. What does that look like? What would His eyes look like? Let your heart reach out and feel the compassion of Jesus. He stops everything, steps into this hopeless situation, puts His hand on the child and restores hope again, restores life again. What kind of God is this that can come into a place of absolute death and bring life; come into a place where there's despair and no hope and recreate a new future? And Jesus took the young man's hand and presented him to his mother. Try to look at the look in her eyes of disbelief, that this God we serve could do such things, the tears of gratitude. This is the God we serve, God of resurrection life, no situation too difficult, no situation beyond Him and He cares. So we begin to engage, find your heart begin to be moved. You start to feel His presence.

Of course I've tried to do it out loud, but normally be doing this alone and as you just allow your heart to flow into the scripture, into the story, the Holy Spirit starts to take over and it gets a life of it's own. God begins to show you other things and how this works in your life, takes you and begins to show you other things. Pictures begin - it starts to take on a life of its own as you focus your attention and refuse to be distracted. Once you learn to do this in scripture, to hold your attention fixed in scripture for long periods of time, your mind becomes trained to tune into the flows of the spirit. Your mind starts to become trained to resist distracting thoughts and stay locked into listening to God. Then our heart starts to feel the flow of life.

This morning I just meditated on that scripture. I just began to weep as I felt God apply it personally to me. I encountered the Jesus who's compassionate and you see experiences like that, we carry them inside us and it enables us to easily connect with Him and to hear from Him and to receive from Him, because we're tuning our inner man to the realities of the spirit of God and the word of God. Very, very simple isn't it? Let's open our eyes. How many people got touched? How many people felt God touch you? Mm, quite a number of you. Father, we just thank You that You're teaching us, training us to be Holy Ghost people, opening our hearts and lives to You, learning how to train and develop our inner man to reject the negative, to focus on the good things that You have for us, and to become people of faith and influence. Lord, let the compassion of Christ deepen in our heart, that as we see lost people we will want to step out of the constraints and do something to help them and touch them with Your love. Everyone said [Amen.] Amen.