(Thought I’d share a post that I had written on a previous blog site – It was inspired in part by the Avatar movie.)
Feb. 18, 2010 – Tonight, my thoughts feel as though they have been placed into a grenade and detonated somewhere in outer space where they are becoming more and more scattered by the minute. (perhaps not quite that bad, but a little bit scattered anyhow) I definitely drank a bit too much coffee today.
Still, I am going to drag my mind through all of it’s distractions and put down something that has really been on my mind for the last week or so. I was really inspired by something that I saw in a movie recently. I’ll get into the details of the movie in a moment, but I’d like to lay a little bit of ground work first.
I think that one of the most painful feelings that I have experienced in adolescence, during my teenage years, and even from time to time in adulthood is the feeling of being alone. I have always been a bit of an introvert, and that has certainly not helped my plight, but even the most extroverted individual surrounded by people every waking moment of the day can still stand in a crowded room and feel alone. Even while 7 other people stand around listening to your jovial and witty self tell a captivating story, you can smile on the outside, but feel a thousand miles away within your soul.
The aloneness that I am talking about might be better described as a lack of connection with others. Even when I am at my best, and it seems like everyone likes me, there are moments when I feel completely invisible. Moments where the person that I really am is completely overlooked by all those around me. During these moments I would like for someone to see beyond the smiling face, or the quiet distance that I sometimes put between myself and others. I would like to make myself Un-Invisible and somehow magically make everyone notice me. As human beings, I am convinced that we have hardwired into our programming a desire for connection with other people. We desire community and the sense that when we are surrounded by the people closest in our lives that they look at us for who we are and still love us. This desire is so strong that it is the reason that we put on the friendly face when we’re around people. We try to show ourselves in the best possible light that hides as many flaws as possible. We desperately hide all of our shortcomings and weaknesses for fear of rejection. And let’s be entirely honest. The people with the fewest ‘flaws’ always seem to have the most friends. In fact, they are the ones that we would really like to have as a friends because we value ourselves based on the company that we keep. (but that is an another subject for another day) The point is that the people who I treasure the most in my life are the ones that have seen my car when it’s dirty, they’ve heard it when I said something completely rude and cruel, they know that I procrastinate a lot, and they know that I am probably living below my “best life now” potential. But, they still love me. When I am around them, the ‘real me’ is not invisible and camouflaged behind my public persona. Instead I am standing there entirely visible for who I really am.
(back to the movie) Many of you I’m sure at this point have watched the movie ‘Avatar’. If you haven’t, I highly recommend watching it tonight. (or perhaps tomorrow if it’s too late tonight) In “Avatar” the ‘blue people’ in the movie have a saying. The saying is, “I see you.” When they use the phrase however, it isn’t just a peekaboo visual sense of the words, but rather it means that they see the you that resides within external shell of your body. “I see you” seems to translate as almost a spiritual openness of the soul. When the beautiful blue woman and the crippled solder finally meet in person for the first time. (after already having fallen in love) She looks him in the eyes and takes him into her arms. At that moment he is unable to hide any of his disabilities and weaknesses and his real self is completely exposed for the first time. At this intense moment of vulnerability, she kisses him and says “I see you.” Their embrace symbolizes that connection all of us long for in life. We long for someone to hold us at our moment of weakness. We long for someone to look deep into our hearts and still be able to kiss our forehead and say that they love us.
Perhaps the most beautiful aspect of God, is His ability to truely ‘see’ us. Even in our most intimate personal relationships, we still are unable to see, or have seen, our innermost being. We share parts of our hearts and souls with those around us, but only the Spirit of God is able to see and commune with us at the soul level. It would be frightening at times for me to draw close to Him, knowing that He knows every detail about me, even better than I know myself, if it weren’t for His vast and absolutely unfailing love accompanied by a perfect understanding of the flawed person that He sees when I stand before Him.
One of my favorite passages in scripture is the 139th Psalm. It expresses this concept as well in one of my favorite ways. There’s a link at the bottom where you can read it. Even if you’re familiar with the chapter, it is impossible to read this passage and not be re-awakened to the awesomeness of God’s closeness and intimate involvement with our lives.
My challenge for you today. Find a quiet place to spend a few moments without disturbances talking and listening to your Creator. Read Psalm 139, and then talk to God. When you begin, say His name. “Jesus.” And then listen to His reply whispering to your Spirit. “I see you.”
“Father, I am humbled. And at the same time, I feel completely uplifted by the awareness that You ‘see’ me in my entirety and still welcome me with open arms to come and be close to You. I am more grateful for and in awe of this fact than any earthly language is able to communicate adequately. Right now, I lift my heart to you. I give it to you entirely. I love you.”
Here’s the link for Psalm 139: