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Good To See You

"It is good to see you!"  I have no idea how often I say those words each day, but something happened this week to give them new meaning.  "It is good to see you," is something we say to people we haven't encountered for a while, or folk we have run into unexpectedly in a place we are not used to seeing them, unless of course the place is somewhere we would rather not be seen.  It is one of those greetings often used in passing and yet as good as it is to see the person, more often than not we are looking right through them without seeing them at all.  

Yesterday the bridge of my glasses snapped.  I suppose duct tape would have sufficed for a quick repair, but unfortunately, I was one hour away from conducting a graveside funeral.  I had never laid eyes on a number of the bereaved and so I didn't want to be introduced in unfashionable duct tape eyewear.  It may have turned their tears to laughter, but I think Christ has a better way.  However, while I rejected the duct tape solution, I wanted to see more than blurry faces.      

One of the kindest people I know discovered my predicament and offered me his own glasses.  I tried them on, but they brought little improvement.  In the end he gave me a ride home so I could retrieve an old pair of my own and in no time I was gathered with the grieving family and able to distinguish the difference between their tears and their smiles. 

Later upon reflection it was the man's gesture of kindness that spoke to me, because in offering me his own glasses he had been willing to shoulder my loss of eyesight in order that I might help others see the Risen Christ.  One thing is for sure.  When we allow the Spirit to move us to deeds of love and compassion, Christ can't help but come into clearer focus for the world around. 

Something else spoke to me as well.  When I first put the old glasses on, after having been walking around for more than an hour with everything badly out of focus, I was suddenly amazed at how good everything looked.  The world is truly beautiful, even in the heart of the big city, beauty surrounds us. 

An hour or two later I greeted a familiar face I hadn't seen for a while, saying, "It is good to see you."  Under my breath I caught myself saying, "Is it ever good to see you!"  Sight is a blessing that we take so easily for granted.  It is amazing to be able to see.  So the next time I find myself being overly critical of how something or someone looks I am going to take off my glasses for a while.  And I will pray that when they go back on, I will be filled with wonder at the beauty of the world around and at the goodness of our God. 

This coming weekend is our annual Lester Randall Preaching Fellowship at the church.  Anna Carter Florence, widely regarded as one of today's greatest preachers, will be speaking on Saturday morning at 10:30 a.m. and preaching at both our 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. services on Sunday.  I will be so glad to see you there!

Peace,

Peter

 

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Rev. Dr. Peter Holmes

Peter Holmes, BA, MDiv, DMin is the Minister of the Congregation at Yorkminster Park Baptist Church

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