I Love You Room- Corner 2-
The Miracle of Appreciative Eyes
In the I love You Room, Corner 2, Jesus will give you the gift of the “Miracle of Appreciative Eyes.” You will be able to see Jesus, yourself, and people with His appreciative eyes.
Appreciative Eyes for Jesus
In John 11, Mary of Bethany's brother Lazarus dies and she becomes hurt and confused. She loved him with all her heart. She essentially told Jesus (v.32), “If You would have cared, You would have come earlier. Don't You care about me?”
There is a great need to be understood by God. We really want Him to understand--actually need Him to. There’s an assumption, however, that He doesn’t understand. We must believe the best about Him. We must walk through our pain loving Him regardless of circumstances.
So Martha came to her sister Mary. She took her aside and said: “The Master is here, and He’s calling for you.” Even in Mary’s pain and perplexity, she got up and ran to Him (v.29, 31). So part of her must have sensed, “He wants me. He’s calling for me. He wants to call me near in this place where I’m hurt and confused.” Jesus is always wanting to teach us this higher way of love. You must never be distracted by your pain or accuse Him of the pain. When you are hurt, you must still trust and love Him, and never take your eyes off of Him. He is awed by the beauty in your eyes and your love for Him. He looks not at the wrong in you, but at your beauty and love because you're innately valuable to Him.
Mary's running to Him showed that she had Appreciative Eyes for Jesus. She heard His heart and would later become the one who gave up her wealthy inheritance to anoint Him with perfume before His death (v.2). In all your weakness, just love and see Him. Never allow pain or perplexity to steal one minute of love. Understand that, through your pain, He is on your side.
Appreciative Eyes for Lazarus... and for Thomas
But there's more! John 11 tells the miracle of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead, but this isn't just a miracle--it's a mystery!
Commentaries on John 11 are all about the miracle of raising Lazarus, a dead person, back to life. Yet that had happened before in 2 Kings 4 when Elisha raised a dead child for a beloved widow. But there is a mystery in John 11 that Jesus reveals. It seems really small, but it’s not. It’s everything.
He says, “I’m going to go through Judea” (Jn. 11:7). There is a prophetic truth about death and sleeping He wants to reveal there (Jn. 11:9-10). Jesus says He’s going to go through Judea because, “Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up” (Jn. 11:11).
Then His disciples rise up and tell him not to go through Judea because there people had threatened to stone Him (Jn. 11:8). They basically say, “Lord, You have a great calling and a great commission! You’re going to change the earth, and You’re going to go through an area where they can kill You?” But Jesus says, “Lazarus is my friend. The one that I love is sick. I go to him.” The apostles resist Him again saying, “If he’s sick, he’ll get better” (Jn. 11:12). Jesus says, “No, he’s dead” (Jn. 11:14).
Then... Thomas responds and says, “Let us go and die with Him also” (Jn. 11:16). Now everybody today calls this one “Doubting Thomas!” I believe it is the exact opposite. Thomas turned out to be the apostle of love; he went to India and had amazing love. There are times when he doubted. But in regards to loving and hoping in others, I believe something had been sealed in that man’s heart in that moment.
The other apostles were concerned with the greatness of the call--the Garden for All. They considered Lazarus to be a no-name and didn’t care enough because he couldn't help them build anything. Jesus not only saw His Great Commission-- His Garden for All-- but He saw the "flower for one." He unveiled to us a mystery, a beauty, and understanding called "the Value of One." Jesus believed this one, Lazarus, was created in His Father’s image. He was ready to passionately pursue him so he would rise to new life. This one man was formed intricately by Jesus and His Father, and Jesus was willing to risk His life for that one. He had Appreciative Eyes for Lazarus.
Now Lazarus did not have any grand calling that we know of--just brother, friend, etc. Yet his worth was indescribable because of the beauty and worth of a human being in His Eyes. How much of this great mystery which has been revealed by our Passionate Pursuer has been diminished here on the earth? When we get to heaven, He’ll ask us, “How did you treat one another? How did you love one another? How did you stop your busy-ness to care for another’s heart?” He'll tell us He hopes we passionately pursued people because they are His greatest treasure on the earth (Deut. 7:6).
I believe that Thomas looked at the eyes of Jesus and saw the way He loved this one. He saw Jesus look over that region of Judea that He was going to walk across and possibly get stoned; and perhaps prophetically saw the journey of the Cross that was coming. When Thomas saw it, he said, “I could die for that. I could lay down my life for that kind of love, the love that I see in His eyes.”
Thomas saw Him when He said it... Did you see Him when He said it? He’s far more hopeful, loving, kind than we can ever dare imagine.
Receive the Gift
In this Corner, you can receive the Miracle of a Heart of Appreciative Eyes for the Lazarus people. They look like the walking dead. They may stink in the grave. Yet in the I Love You Room, Jesus extends an invitation for you to not just "look after" the Lazarus people, but to "look at" them. You will not just look over their heads; you will look into their eyes, and with your Gift of Appreciative Eyes, they will come alive! Your love will raise them from the dead. With this miracle gift, you will be able to look at them with such value, and they will become the great, noble men and women that they are.
Oh that our hearts would be fresh and alive for human beings! Their thoughts, their feelings, their worth, their value--and that we would be ready to launch them greater than ourselves. Love comes alive, conquers, and is stronger than death! People will look at your eyes of love, and be so inspired. Be the one to bring out the diamonds in the rough. God so loved the world that He gave His whole life for us, and we get to do the same.
Imagine seeing Jesus' Appreciative Eyes when He said He would go to Lazarus--even at the risk of Him dying. What do you see in Him as He says it? Ask Jesus if there is anything He wants you to do to see more with His Appreciative Eyes towards the Garden for All, or for the Flower for One.
At this time a man named Lazarus was sick. He lived in Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2(Mary, whose brother Lazarus was sick, was to anoint the Lord with perfume and wipe His feet with her hair.) 3 So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one You love is sick.”
4 When Jesus heard this, He said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”
8“Rabbi,” they replied, “the Jews just tried to stone You, and You are going back there?” 9Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours of daylight? If anyone walks in the daytime, he will not stumble, because he sees by the light of this world. 10 But if anyone walks at night, he will stumble, because he has no light.”
11 After He had said this, He told them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to wake him up.” 12 His disciples replied, “Lord, if he is sleeping, he will get better.” 13 They thought that Jesus was talking about actual sleep, but He was speaking about the death of Lazarus. 14 So Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, 15 and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”
16 Then Thomas called Didymus said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, so that we may die with Him...
...28 After Martha had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary aside to tell her, “The Teacher is here and is asking for you." 29 And when Mary heard this, she got up quickly and went to Him...31 When the Jews who were in the house consoling Mary saw how quickly she got up and went out, they followed her, supposing she was going to the tomb to mourn there. 32 When Mary came to Jesus and saw Him, she fell at His feet and said, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.”