When I first started wearing glasses, I argued with the optometrist, "These are too strong! I can see everything!"
"You're supposed to," he countered.
"No, you don't understand," I insisted. "I can see the leaves on the trees!"
I had gotten used to my poor vision and the soft, blurry world I had been perceiving. Trees were brown trunks with soft, shimmering green blobs on top. I had been expecting that once my vision was corrected, I would see these same images magnified, not clarified.
However, with corrected eyesight, instead of being magnified, my world seem smaller and less private. I noticed the people in cars, not just the cars. I wondered how often people I knew had been waving to me, only to find their friendly greetings returned with blank stares.
My eyes have been veiled by nearsighted vision. When the veil removed, I saw clearly – sometimes more clearly than I wished. I had enjoyed the soft-focus-lens look of my face. Now in the hard light of reality, I saw every freckle and pore. Looking in the mirror one day, I asked my husband, "Is this how you see me?"
"Is what how I see you?" he asked, looking perplexed.
"Can you see this?" I asked as I pointed to a brown spot on my face.
"Can you see this?" I asked, pointing to a blemish.
"Have you always seen these? I don't like the way I look when I can see," I murmured as I turned from the mirror and pulled off my glasses.
John came around behind me and turned me back toward the mirror. "Do you want me to tell you what I see?"
I really did, but in response, I just shrugged my shoulders. "Put your glasses on and look in the mirror," John ordered.
While standing behind me, he pointed out to me what he saw each time he looked at me. He highlighted all the things he liked about my features. My focus shifted from the flaws to the love that overlooked them. As I looked closer I saw the good that John saw in me.
Just like me with my new glasses, when you first turned from your sins and beheld your true image, you probably didn't like what you saw – the remnants of the flaws, wrinkles, and blemishes of your former life. The clarification brought magnification to your shortcomings.
With my glasses, I came to a new realization: my flaws had always been there, but I had been loved in spite of them. It's the same for you. Your flaws have always been there, but God loves you in spite of them.
Today's culture – even church culture when it is legalistic and religious – is constantly attempting to focus on your flaws instead of your true worth. Unknowingly, you can allow cultural influences to drape, disfigure, and mask what God has done. You can easily lose sight of the truth.
The Lord wants to call you out of your cold, dark hiding place into the gentle warmth of the light of the knowledge of Him. Perhaps you are afraid to come into His presence, afraid the way will be barred by mistakes you have made since you have been a Christian. You are afraid your works are not good enough or numerous enough to grant you entrance. You are afraid that if you call, He will not answer. So you hide in fear of rejection, assuming it is better not to try than to be disappointed. You don't reach out, fearing you will be turned away.
I'm writing this to remind you that you have nothing to hide. You have boldness because of Christ. God wants you to be confident as you come before Him in your time of need. He wants you to be transformed even more than you want to be. He longs to speak to you more than you even want to hear from him. He is waiting for you to turn to Him so He can remove anything in your heart that may be separating you from glorious intimacy with Him!