Search This Blog

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The cover story

Just as water mirrors your face,
   so your face mirrors your heart. 
(Proverbs 27:19)

Ever try to judge the contents of a book simply by looking at the cover?  I have, and in turn, have been very disappointed in my initial "assessment" of the book. Once I get into the "heart" of the book, I find what I hoped was contained there is missing, or falls short of what I expected.  What I hoped was a "good read" leaves me a little disillusioned.

Human beings are definitely not "books", but we "reflect" a certain image to the world by how we conduct ourselves and what appears on our face.  I am often called on the carpet because my face betrays my REAL feelings toward some decision or situation that is evolving.  So many people today have become proficient in "putting on a happy face", but deep underneath, they seethe in anger, wallow in disappointment, or are bubbling with absolute discontent.  

I am a people-watcher.  I like to observe how they walk, what they do with their hands, how they posture, where they position themselves in a group, etc.  It tells me a lot about that person, but it never tells me the whole story.  In fact, to really get to know the individual, I need to study their eyes.  Within their eyes, I can often see hurt, fear, folly, or any number of other emotional connections that give me some insight into the individual.

Windows to our soul - that is one writer has referred to our eyes as - and it is quite true.  They often betray our true response to a situation quicker than any other part of our being.  They also act as the "gateway" by which a whole lot of stuff affects us!  What we behold with our eyes often determines our response.

When I am tired, a little beat down, my eyes are dull.  When I am energized from within by the Holy Spirit that resides within, there is a vitality evident in my eyes, despite the physical fatigue my body may feel.  I have seen men and women in their last days of struggle with terminal disease, bodies consumed with disease and pain, with eyes aglow with the joy of the Lord.  If I only looked at the "cover" of their book, I'd see an entirely different story than what is really contained within the pages of their heart!

We need to become proficient at "reading" what is reflected in the eyes.  Even if someone has become proficient at wearing the "masks" of life, simply covering over what is affecting them at the moment, their eyes are visible through the mask!  They are a true reflection of what is happening deep within the heart.  The heart is the seat of our emotions - emotions are affected by much and by their very existence, they motivate or hold us back.  Learning to go beyond the "cover" story will allow us to minister to others in ways that only God can do.