Discern

senior man thinkingThe word “Discern” has to do with perception and being able to recognize things from a different angle or perspective.  I think it’s connected to wisdom and knowledge.  With knowledge I can glean lots of information about multiple subjects. I think wisdom is the application of knowledge. Discernment is the layered relationship between wisdom and knowledge. Paul has a deep and genuine love for the people in the church at Philippi and it comes out in his writing. In his introductory chapter, He talks about how thankful he is for them. He then prays a powerful prayer over them. It has blessed me for years. Check this out…

9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God. (Philippians 1:9-11 NIV)

 

The ability to discern between what is best for me and what is not, seems very basic. I find that no matter how old I am or how long I’ve been on the journey with the Lord, I still need discernment to make good choices. Sometimes the choices are really obvious, at other times it’s hard to know what the right thing to do. Andy Stanley has written about the subject of Wisdom and he says to always ask one question: “What is the wise thing to do?” If I ask that question of the Lord, He will provide me with wisdom and discernment. I do want to be pure and blameless today and every day. I want to be filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Christ and from Him. I want this so that others could possibly be attracted to the Lord I serve and live for.

Pressing On!
Dwayne

 

Understand

senior man thinkingI remember hearing the phrase: “seek first to understand and then you can be understood”. It’s sometimes hard to understand where a person is coming from when certain statements come from their mouth. There are other times when it’s clear what their agenda is and its “game on”. Understanding is sometimes a difficult concept.  I don’t always have to have great knowledge to understand. The art of listening is really important to understanding. Paul tells the church in Corinth about how understanding and discernment come from the Presence of the Holy Spirit of God. Check this out…

The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. 11 For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. 12 What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. 13 This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words. 14 The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. 15 The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, 16 for,
“Who has known the mind of the Lord

    so as to instruct him?”
But we have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:10b-16 NIV)

My words, my thoughts, my insights and my understanding all come from the Spirit of God in me. I want to live all my life walking in step with the Spirit of God living in me and through me spilling into the lives of others. I want others who do not have the Holy Spirit to understand what a “GAME CHANGER” His Presence in me is. I want to keep my Spiritual ears tuned in to hear from Him about how to respond, where to go, what to do in my daily activities. He gives insight that no human being could begin to fathom. I’m thankful that His Presence in me lights the path I should walk in.

Pressing On!
Dwayne

Vision

bifocal glassesI pretty much hate my glasses. I have to have them to see, so I’m thankful for them as a tool, but I wish my eyesight were 20/20 without the aid of glasses. I believe insight is similar to sight. I have insight because I’ve had help understanding or “seeing” into some concept or thing. Jesus gave sight to a blind man and His act of kindness stirred up the religious leaders. They interrogated the man twice as well as his parents.  The man pushed back a bit. Check this out…

24 A second time they summoned the man who had been blind. “Give glory to God by telling the truth,” they said. “We know this man is a sinner.”
25 He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!(John 9:24-25 NIV)

The man didn’t know how to debate the religious leaders who were trying to trip him up. They were investigating the healing thoroughly and the man stood on what he knew.  He didn’t want to debate about “faith issues” – He just knew what He knew – He could see!!

After this round with the Pharisees and the “push back”, they threw the former blind man out of the synagogue. Jesus came to him to speak into his life and formerly introduce Himself to the man. After the man realized who Jesus was, He believed in Him and worshipped Him. Jesus elaborated on the issues with the religious leaders. Check this out….

39 Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.”
40 Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, “What? Are we blind too?”
41 Jesus said, “If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains. (John 9:39-41 NIV)

 Jesus came to give spiritual sight. If I think I can see anything without Him – I’m spiritually blind as a bat!  I need the Word and my walk with the Lord to give me sight and insight into the heart of God. Without Him –I’m lost and blind. With Him, I can see things I’ve never before seen. With Him, my spiritual vision is 20/20!

Pressing On!
Dwayne

Sight

eyesight testI hate that my eyesight has fallen off over the years. I started wearing glasses years ago and then migrated to contact lenses. I eventually had to go to bifocals because I couldn’t see my phone. I now wear one contact for close up seeing in one eye and in the other eye, I wear a contract for seeing far away. In the evening I have to wear glasses. Seeing is very important to me. I want to see my family. I want to see my friends. I want to see the beauty in God in all creation.   Jesus saw things and the details didn’t escape Him. Check this out….

 1 As Jesus looked up, he saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. 2 He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. 3 “Truly I tell you,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. 4 All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” (Luke 21:1-4 NIV)

Jesus can see everything. He not only sees, but He has complete insight to my heart and my life. He sees my motives and my thoughts. He knows my heart completely. I noticed in this passage that He saw the rich and He saw the poor. He doesn’t miss anything. I should not do things for show, but out of the purity of my heart devoted to Him. I should do what He calls me to do WHEN He calls me to do. He will see it. He’s the only One Who needs to see it. I want the Lord to look at me and see a devoted heart that seeks to honor Him.

Pressing On!
Dwayne

See

FieldMy heart goes out to people who have been blind since birth. They are missing one of the senses that let so much light into our soul. It seems to me that the senses that they have are heightened due to the fact they can’t see. For example, a blind person seems to hear better or be more sensitive to touch than a person who can see. I think it’s because they are not distracted by what they see, they just listen intently. Their sense of touch is actually how they read faces, books and other parts of their surroundings.  I have struggled with my eyesight getting weaker as I get older, but with the help of contact lenses or glasses I can still see pretty well. Jesus forever changed the world of two blind men turned beggars. Check this out…

29 As Jesus and his disciples were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed him. 30 Two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was going by, they shouted, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!”
31 The crowd rebuked them and told them to be quiet, but they shouted all the louder, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!”
32 Jesus stopped and called them. “What do you want me to do for you?” he asked.
33 “Lord,” they answered, “we want our sight.”
34 Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him. (Matthew 20:29-34 NIV)

There are a couple of interesting pieces of this event that struck me as interesting. First, these two blind guys are shouting, “Lord have mercy on us!”. It seems obvious what their need is, but Jesus asked them anyway – “What do you want me to do for you?” Second, when Jesus touched their eyes and restored their sight, they followed Him.  I love that picture of the person healed following the healer. I could really learn something from this.

The two blind guys were not the least bit embarrassed to ask Jesus for help. They were even rebuked and told to be quiet, but they cranked it up even more asking for Jesus help.

I need to ask Him to sharpen my eyesight so that I can see things that I’ve never seen before. I need my vision to be healed daily. I think some of the things I’ve seen really hurt me. Other things I’ve seen have really helped shape my perspective. I really just want to see life through the eyes of Jesus. I want His eyes to be my eyes. I want to be laser focused on Him and His call upon my life.

Pressing On!
Dwayne