It’s true, the “look of love is in your eyes.” From the lingering gooey gaze signaling the smitten, to the affectionate study of their “person” by a much-loved canine, eye contact conveys, “you are noticed, you are special, you are loved.” But when there is very little eye contact from other human beings, we feel ignored, unimportant, unworthy. I’ve been thinking about how eye contact has a humanizing effect ever since this summer’s jump-start on our CBS study of The Book of Acts. (thanks to a fellow learner for introducing me to the Journible, which caused me to slow down my reading and reflection of scripture, helping me “see” more in His word.) I noticed something in Acts 3:1-10 — and was convicted. Then this landed in my inbox, timed by God to propel me from conviction to action. (Be sure to follow Alicia Bruxvoort’s writing with Rooted in Truth Scriptures, Growing In Love Practical Application, Listen and Watch.)
Giving When We Have Nothing to Give
“So Hagar gave this name to the Lord Who spoke to her, ‘You are a God Who sees.’” Genesis 16:13a (NLV)
I was on my way home from the store when I saw her standing there, feet planted between two dingy piles of melting snow on the corner of a busy intersection.
The cardboard sign in her hands broadcasted her desperation, and my stomach churned with empathy when I read the sloppy scrawl. But what could I do? I had three gallons of milk in the trunk, two $1 bills in my wallet and a pack of pink bubble-gum on the dashboard.
When the traffic light turned green, I turned my head away from the quandary on the corner and steered my van toward home.
I’d driven no more than a mile when a thought lodged in my mind like a holy whisper and refused to leave: Go back, and let her know you see her.
Back in high school, I saw the blockbuster summer thriller, Jaws. I have never been the same. Summer camp on Lake Saranac revealed my irking irrational fear that some crazed person had caught and released a shark into the lake to wreak havoc on us unsuspecting campers.
Years later when my new husband and traveled by boat into deep waters to snorkel in the Florida Keys, I noticed a woman on board reading a book about sharks. Then the snorkel guide reassured us not to worry if we saw a hammerhead shark while we snorkeled because thus far, he had never hurt anyone. I was so filled with fear that I insisted my new husband paddle one handed so he could use the other hand to hold mine!
Fear is a powerful force to contend with because there are so many different kinds that assault us: fear of failure, fear of the unknown, fear that the things we hold dear are falling apart — just to name a few. Fear often starts with discouragements turned into nagging thoughts then into worry; one of the phrases I heard frequently while living in London was, “Well now, that’s a worry, isn’t it?”