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Are You Letting Him Answer?

“Open the eyes of my heart, Lord.”

We pray earnestly and fervently that God will open the eyes of our hearts. We pray this because we want to be more like God—we want to reflect him truly. But do we let his answer to our prayer penetrate our minds and eyes? Do we let his answer soak into our daily lives? How often do we keep our eyes open to see the way God answers these prayers?

I know what it is like to pray a life-altering prayer in passing.

Personally, I have prayed that prayer countless times. I have sung the same words in church. So, I know what it is like to pray a life-altering prayer in passing—expecting no response, but getting an answer that changes your soul.

Part of allowing the answer of prayer to change your heart is actively accepting those tugs—those small voices that tell you to linger. And sometimes we have suppressed them for so long that we no longer know they are there. We ask ourselves why isn’t God speaking to us, but maybe—just maybe—he is, but you aren’t listening. My challenge to you is to be vigilant in searching your experiences for the answers to your prayers.

Taking my own advice, I have tried to open my eyes to God’s answers. I have tried to see the world the way that God sees it, including how He sees people. So, as I walk down the street, I try to look around and actually see people.

I didn’t really want my prayer to be answered, but God had opened my eyes to him.

Several weeks back, I was walking into the mall and noticed a homeless man sitting on the sidewalk. If I am honest with you, I didn’t want to see him. I didn’t want to see him suffering because it made my life harder—it made me carry a heavier burden. At that point, I didn’t want my prayer to be answered, but God had opened my eyes to him. I tried to walk away; I tried to run. Like Jonah, I wanted to run, but I was brought back to that man. So, instead, I bought him lunch and sat on the cold winter ground and broke bread with him. We communed—laughing, hurting, and sharing our lives, if only for a moment.

He had been a roofer, but an accident in the summer left him with pain and a low range of motion in his shoulder. Roofing was no longer a viable option, but it was all he knew how to do. He had been in a committed relationship. She had invested in a new car, and they had gotten behind in the payments. This broke their relationship—they lost the car and she kicked him out. Without work, without his girlfriend, without shelter, and with over twenty thousand dollars of debt, he came to find his home on the street. He began to beg. It has only been a few months, but he has hopes of changing his situation. He keeps seeing doctors in the hopes that they can heal the pain in his shoulder. He is saving—to the best of his ability—to rent an apartment. Currently, he lives in a shelter where people consistently overdose in the showers.

This is God’s child. A child who has no support system, no home, and gets glances every day that tell him that he is a danger to society.

Looking at him now, I see a man that has had a hard life that landed him in an even harder position.

I prayed that God would open the eyes of my heart, and he responded. He showed me this man. He showed me his heart. How often do I see the people sitting on the streets begging for people to notice them—begging for food to survive? These people too hold the image of God in their hearts and faces.

Looking at him the first time, I saw a homeless man. Looking at him now, I see a man that has had a hard life that landed him in an even harder position.

Sometimes the scariest thing about praying for something is the idea that God will answer. But as Christians, we must surrender ourselves to his answers. If we don’t, are we truly his?

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