A post about God’s love and continual grace throughout my walk with him.
Sometimes, when I drive down my street, or spend time with my family, or sit in class, I play this game with myself. I try to imagine that I’m doing these things for the first time. I try to imagine what my first reaction would be to these people and places that are so familiar to me now.
I’m not sure why I started playing this game, but I’ve come to find that I like it. Encountering daily activities as completely novel experiences has caused clarity, appreciation, and a childlike wonder to quickly replace my otherwise apathetic and complacent attitude. How have I never noticed how many trees are in my neighborhood? When did the members of my family become so distinctly unique and funny? At what point did I begin taking my education for granted?
Just today I watched as a talk-show host interviewed Johnny Depp about playing the part of Edward Scissorhands in one of his first films. She asked him what he did to get in character, to which he replied, “I had to look at the world as if I had never seen it before… and I loved it!” He went on to say that he was constantly in awe of the most mundane things, and was surprised with how freeing and safe it made him feel.
In John 3, Jesus speaks to a very confused Nicodemus, trying to make him understand “heavenly things.” All of the concepts that Jesus mentions–being born again, the Son of Man, eternal life–are so familiar to me, that it almost seems laughable that Nicodemus did not understand what Jesus meant. But then I thought of Edward Scissorhands, who found pleasure in activities and sights that everyone else found boring. The joy that Nicodemus would feel as he first began to understand these concepts far outweighs the joy that I feel having “understood” them for years.
There is a joy and a comfort that come only through a deep familiarity with the Word of God and the saving grace that lies within. But I believe that it is also beneficial to approach the Bible as if you’ve never read it before. This new perspective provides clarity of Jesus’ character, appreciation for his overwhelming sacrifice, and a childlike wonder over why he chose you.
Perhaps you can only truly see something during that fleeting moment after you didn’t see it at all.