This year Ready for the Road Ahead is taking on a new direction. It is one that follows the grand theme of sight in all aspects which runs throughout Scripture. My weekly writings will be excerpts from a book of the same name which should be published (Lord willing) later this year.
Photography is an art built on two main components- light and sight. Without some form of light and its interaction with the subject pictures would not exist. Sight involves an observant eye to notice and discern what will be worthy of someone’s attention. Good photographers are constantly on the lookout for interesting things to photograph. Most of the time they will take pictures of the typical things which inspire and are beautiful: a sunrise or sunset, children, majestic vistas or flowers to name a few of the more common subject matters. But great photographers are the ones who see more than just the typical things of beauty. Sometimes they see an object that others would not necessarily deem beautiful but thanks to their particular vision is something that is now deserving of another look.
God is not in the business of seeing objects or people in the same way we do. The Old Testament is replete with people chosen by God who would probably never live up to our standards for leadership. Moses was a murderer. Gideon was a coward. Jacob was a liar and a cheater. But “odd” leadership choices are not limited to the Old Testament. Most of the disciples were not “religious” people. Peter, Andrew, James and John were business owners in the fishing industry (Mt. 4:18-22; Lk.5:1-11; Jn. 1:35-42). One disciple was a political activist, another a skeptic (Lk. 6:12-16; Jn. 1: 43-51), and one a despised tax collector (Mt. 2:14-17; Lk. 5:27-32). They were not the kind of people you and I would choose to begin a ministry but they were the people Jesus called.
I had been leading a study series on the Tabernacle when I stumbled upon a unique passage. What struck me about this passage was the definitive way the Lord identified a particular man to design and oversee the construction of the Tabernacle and the nature of that identification (Ex. 4:1-4 and following). What struck me first of all was how Bezalel’s lineage was so specific. The second aspect of this identification also impressed me. Bezalel had been given a special infusion of “the Spirit of God”. If Bezalel was a photographer, he would not just be taking pictures of the sunrise over Israel’s wilderness camp he’d be taking pictures of unique subject matter just like me. The Lord is quite clear that Bezalel is more than your average artisan and just so Moses doesn’t miss it the Lord says to Moses, “SEE”. While the verb is basically what you would expect, the literal action of seeing with the eyes, it can also include the idea of giving attention to something (Jer. 2:31) or to take heed (Ex. 10:10). In other words the Lord was saying, “Don’t miss this!” He was encouraging Moses to see Bezalel in the same way as the Lord saw him.
The Bible is quite clear that the Lord sees all His children this way. He has given each a unique personality, character, set of skills and one or more spiritual gifts. We no longer have to be specially equipped to fulfill His calling in our lives as Bezalel was. From the moment we trust Christ as our Savior that Spirit has taken up residence in us so that now He is an active part of all that we do. And DOING is what He wants from us. We may not be called to evangelize unknown territories or run ministries but each of us is called to use what we have, where we are, whenever we can. Several passages encourage us to do everything, even the most mundane actions, for the Lord (Mt. 5:16; 1 Cor. 10:31; Col. 3:17, 23-24). He may call and empower me to do something great like He did with Esther (Est. 4:13-14) or He may use me in simpler ways (Ecc. 4:9-10), but by His Spirit I am fully equipped to do anything He asks me to do.
If I truly believe that God not only sees but knows my potential, then I must believe He sees the same in others. But do I? Scripture admonishes us to encourage one another (1 Thes. 5:11; Heb. 3:13) but am I doing that? I can grab my camera and see beauty in rusty chains and dilapidated buildings. But am I mindful that people can be the same? Their rusty spots and peeling paint are things of beauty that the Lord is about to use to bring glory to Himself. Like Moses, I must listen when the Lord says, “SEE, I have called (Bezalel) and put My Spirit in them” because His camera sees the greatest pictures of all. And I should know- I’m one of them. So, why not others too?
Ann H. LeFevre, M. Div.
https://www.annhlefevre.com; Olivetreeann@mail.com; https://www.linkedin.com/in/annhlefevre; https://www.facebook.com/ann.h.lefevre