What Are You Looking For?

The Latest Word from John Ed Mathison

We see what we are looking for in life. Some people are always looking for the negative things – and they see them. Other people are looking for the good things in life – and they see them. What we see is a choice that we make concerning our attitude towards life.

A poet wrote, “Two men looked through prison bars. One saw mud, the other saw stars.” You see what you are looking for.

Two girls went walking through the forest together. As they returned home one complained about the dusty road, the flies, and the heat. The other talked excitedly about the flowers in the woods and a glimpse from the hilltop at the turn of the road she would never forget. The two girls were on the same road – but they saw extremely different things.

A boy was waiting for dinner at his home. He went out to the back yard and started playing basketball with some of his friends. In doing so, his contact lens fell out. He and his buddies looked for it, but couldn’t find it.

He went in and told his mother about losing his contact lens. She said, “Let me help.” He said, “We’ve already looked for 20 minutes – you can’t find it.” She went outside and in just a few short minutes found the contact lens and brought it to him. The boy was amazed, and asked, “How did you do that?” She said, “You and I were looking for two different things – you were looking for a little piece of plastic, but I was looking for $150!” In life, you see what you’re looking for.

Paul wrote to the Philippians, “Let me say this one more thing, fix your thoughts on what is true and good and right; think about things that are pure and lovely and dwell on the fine, good things in others. Think about all you can praise God for and be glad about.” (Phil 4:8)

When we look for those things, we discover peace, purpose, possibilities, and power for living.

Jesus always looked at possibilities rather than problems. One day when He had been teaching a long time, the disciples came to Him and told Him that they had a problem. The people were hungry – there was no food to eat. All the stores were closed. All the disciples could see was a problem.

Jesus didn’t see it as a problem, but as a possibility. He inquired about what food they did have. The only available food was a lunch that a little boy brought with 5 loaves and two fish. Andrew brought the boy to Jesus. He took the food and blessed it and fed thousands of people and had 12 basketfuls left over! (Matthew 14: 13-21) Jesus never saw a problem – he just saw possibilities.

There’s an old gospel song I remember singing as a youth…

Look for the beautiful, look for the true – sunshine and shadows are all around you.
Looking at evil we grope in the night – looking at Jesus we walk in the light.

What do you see?


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