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Tag Archives: eyes of faith

Seeing Like a Disciple

GlassesAs I post about what it means to be a disciple of Christ, there’s one more thing I want to mention. It just may be the hardest to accomplish.

We were looking at Andrew as he brought his brother, Simon, to Jesus.

And he brought him to Jesus.
Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon son of John. You will be called Cephas” (which, when translated, is Peter).
John 1:42

One of the biggest misunderstandings in the Bible is when we refer to Simon as Peter. Let’s look at the whole picture.

Andrew comes to his brother and says, “You’ve got to meet the Messiah.” Simon then agrees and goes to see Jesus.

The first thing that happens, according to Scripture, is that Jesus looks into him. This phrase is used only a few times in Scripture. Like with the rich young man who asked Jesus how he could inherit eternal life. The Bible literally says that Jesus looked into him and loved him.

This is a look of discernment that sees beyond the external. The Lord saw who Simon could become. That should be how we view people.

“But that’s Jesus; I can’t see into people’s lives.”

Remember the definition – a disciple wants to become what their teacher is. Disciples of Christ should look beyond the outward appearance of those around them.

Let’s talk about Simon. Jesus looked into him and said, “You are Simon (which means obedient listener) the son of John (which means God’s grace).” He then went on to say, “You will be called Cephas.”

The only Greek word to translate Cephas was Petros – which is Peter to us. I believe that’s why the Holy Spirit recorded it here for us. So that we would know what Jesus was really saying about him. Cephas is a very specific Aramaic word. It’s only used two times in the Old Testament.

It literally means a hollow rock. In both places in the Old Testament it was used for a place people ran to for hiding. It was a place of refuge.

It turned out that Peter was a rock that the disciples could hide in. When he was around, no one else needed to talk. He answered all the questions, right or wrong.

When he came to the Lord, Jesus looked and saw beyond the rough exterior of a fisherman. He looked into the plan of God for his life.

“You are a place of refuge – a hollow rock.”

This is the greatest anointing you can use to win the lost. We need to look at people through the eyes of Christ. To see them as what they can become in Christ. Sometimes that means that we see what could be called a flaw now; but how Christ could use it for His glory in the future.

God is great at turning defects into His glory. He can turn a big mouth into evangelist. He can change a worrier to prayer warrior. In my experience, the easiest person to befriend was the one no one else liked in the group or the office.

Be open to the Spirit. Be courageous. Tell what you found in Christ. Lead people to Jesus. And look beyond the outward.

Be an Andrew for the glory of the Lord.

Question: What was a flaw in your life that God turned around and used for His glory?

© Nick Zaccardi 2016

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Posted by on February 12, 2016 in Faith, Ministry, Power of God, Spiritual Walk

 

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Unseeing the Seen

MountainI’m starting to understand the prophet Isaiah a little better lately. I’ve always wondered what it must have been like to have a calling like his. To hear from God and yet know that most of the nation of Israel would ignore your message. That was a tough calling to walk in.

Of all the Israelites living at that time, Isaiah was probably the most committed to the ways of the Lord. Yet when he had a face to face encounter with God, his reaction was immediate.

“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.”
Isaiah 6:5

The fact is that the prophet had received a view of the very throne room of God. He saw the Seraphim declaring the holiness of the Lord. He saw the glory, might, and perfection of the one true God.

The whole experience was overwhelming to his senses. That’s what made him cry out from the depths of his being.

“Woe to me! I am ruined!”

In that moment he saw the perfection of the Kingdom of God in stark contrast to the level at which he and the children of Israel were living at that time. When he said, “I am ruined,” I don’t think that he meant he was going to be judged and killed by God.

It’s more than that. He knew that from that point on, he could never go back to what his life was like even one day before. He could never unsee what he has just witnessed. The vision of the exalted Lord would overshadow everything he did from that day forward.

That’s why we need to see God’s vision for our lives. It changes everything and propels us forward.

It’s why I can’t stop praying for and speaking about revival. In my spirit, the Lord has shown me the victorious church. I’ve seen God’s people hearing a clear Word from God and walking in it. Through the eyes of faith I see a mighty manifestation of the Holy Spirit’s power. It’s on the way.

Sure, I get frustrated when I see how far I am from where I need to be. I wonder how Christ will ever bring His church to this level.

But I can’t stop now. I can’t unsee what I’ve seen in the spirit. Though I’ve sometimes thought about what it would be like if I was just a normal person sitting in a pew each week. Smiling, clapping, and singing on Sunday; then chasing the world for the rest of the week.

I know in my heart that could never happen. I’ve seen the glory of God manifest in His church. I can’t stop moving forward until that day arrives.

We need vision. It only comes from time in the presence of the Holy Spirit. That where we see the unseen. Then, once you’ve seen it – God’s will for your life – you’ll never be the same.

Question: What’s the vision God’s placed in your heart?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 
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Posted by on February 4, 2015 in Faith, Power of God, Prayer, Revival

 

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