Open my eyes, that I may see and behold wondrous things…

Out of the mouth of babes:

“…and said to Him, “Do You hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have perfected praise’?” (Matthew 21:16, New King James).

A few weeks ago, I received an email with a book excerpt.  I can’t remember what it was called or the authors name – sorry I can’t give them the credit they deserve!  But the crux of it was on the state of the world without Jesus.  What would the world be like if Jesus wasn’t born?  The author said, there’d be no new testament.  There would be no church, or not as we know it today – there wouldn’t be the church spires pointing skyward to remind us of our heavenly Father.  There wouldn’t be the love, grace, mercy as we know it through our salvation in Jesus nor would we have access to the Holy Spirit.   Now the author wrote it much more eloquently and creatively than I did – but none the less, it stuck with me.

At the dinner table, I asked Immanuel about his last day at school and remined him that the church nativity play was just around the corner.  I commented on how blessed we are to have Christmas – because without Jesus we wouldn’t have Christmas and the celebrations connected to it. (And perhaps we would have different celebrations, but it wouldn’t be the same.)

“So, everyone who celebrates Christmas is a Christian – but they just don’t know it yet.”  Those were my son’s musings.  I agreed and could see he was right.

“Yep. They are blind and can’t see Jesus.”

“Being blind would be horrible.”

 (Yes.  Especially spiritually blind – I know what it’s like to be spiritually blind and I know what it is like to be able to see the truth of Jesus – and there is no way that I would ever want to go back to that darkness.)

“It would be horrible to be blind…” He repeated and I could see him thinking this through.

“Yes, it would be.” And I couldn’t agree more with the words that were coming out of his mouth.  And he repeated it again – to accentuate the importance – that everyone who celebrates Christmas is Christian but they just do not know it yet… and I’ll add in – because their eyes have not been opened to Him – to Jesus yet.  ‘Yet’ – I keep adding in ‘yet’ because at some point, I know it will happen – my hope rests in knowing it will happen but… for some, it just hasn’t happened yet – and when it does – there will be marvellous testimonies that point back to glory and greatness of God.  This alone – fills my heart with excitement and joy and I wish I could come to know those stories… those stories that are being formed and waiting to come into being.

After Christmas, my son asked, “why doesn’t grandpa go to church?”  I could see he was trying to make sense of his world, to work out why do we go to church when no one else in our immediate family does.

“… because Grandpa doesn’t believe in church or Jesus.”

“… But he knows it exists… he knows it exists… he knows it’s a thing.”

“Yep. True.”

I didn’t really know how to answer this. 

I mean, how do you explain to a ten-year-old that some people see the brokenness of broken people connected to the church and the world – and connect it back to God.  The world’s brokenness combined with brokenness of people muddies the image of God.  Thus, forcing people to deny the existence of God.  But, it is probably more complicated than that – it always is.  Especially when you add in spiritual warfare –  and the devil is prone to come in, take, twist and hide by placing a veil over head to mask the truth – to keep us in darkness.

God’s word gives us knowledge and understanding into how the world operates from a spiritual perspective.  It informs us on how people are blind to the truth and how people seek worldly wisdom, and the cross becomes a message of foolishness.  God knows the truth of the world and how it operates – none of this is new to Him and He’s steps ahead of us all – and his word provides us with insight and understanding.

The Parable of the Sower

13 That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the lake. Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat in it, while all the people stood on the shore. Then he told them many things in parables, saying: “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. Whoever has ears, let them hear.”

10 The disciples came to him and asked, “Why do you speak to the people in parables?”

11 He replied, “Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. 12 Whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. 13 This is why I speak to them in parables:

“Though seeing, they do not see;
    though hearing, they do not hear or understand.

14 In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah:

“‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding;
    you will be ever seeing but never perceiving.
15 For this people’s heart has become calloused;
    they hardly hear with their ears,
    and they have closed their eyes.
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
    hear with their ears,
    understand with their hearts
and turn, and I would heal them.’[a]

16 But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. 17 For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.

18 “Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: 19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path. 20 The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. 21 But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. 22 The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. 23 But the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.” (Matthew 13:1-23 NIV)

The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction!  But we who are being saved it is the very power of God.  As the scriptures say, ‘I will destroy the wisdom of the wise and discard the intelligence of the intelligent.’

So, where does this leave the philosophers, the scholars, and the world’s brilliant debaters? God has made the wisdom of this world look foolish.  Since God in his wisdom saw to it that the world would never know him through human wisdom, he has used our foolish preaching to save those who believe.  It is foolish to the Jews who ask for signs from heaven.  And it is foolish to the Greeks, who seek human wisdom.  So when we preach that Christ was crucified, the Jews are offended and the Gentiles say it’s all nonsense.

But to those called by God to salvation, both Jews and Gentiles, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God.  This foolish plan of God is wiser that the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength.

Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you.  Instead, God chose things that the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise.   And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful.  God chose things despised by the world, things that counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important.  As a result, no one can ever boast in the presence of God.

God has united you with Christ Jesus.  For our benefit God made him to be wisdom itself.  Christ made us right with God; he made us pure and holy, and he freed us from sin.  Therefore, as the scriptures say, ‘If you want to boast, boast only about the Lord.’” (1 Corinthians 1:18-31 NLT)

… So… I may not have all the answers to all the questions that my son throws at me – but I know, God’s word holds those answers.  He knows those that are in the world and how they operate the world.  His word gives us insight and understanding – and the means to combat it.  I may not be able to remove the veil blocking people’s vision of the truth, nor can I change the heart of my own father.  But God can.  I can pray for those who are spiritually blind, for those that ‘celebrate Christmas but don’t know they’re Christian yet’.  I can pray, show love, grace and kindness and God will do the rest.  I can do my best to represent God and Jesus to those who see the message of the cross as foolishness – but I can’t do that on my own.  I am not perfect – and will most likely slip-up especially when I am tired… and I still need Jesus and the Holy Spirit to teach and guide me in all I do.  I still need God in all I do.

… In this season, we celebrate the gift and life of Jesus.  And can be reminded of God’s promises and all He has done and accomplished in giving us Jesus; and all that is connected to him.  Jesus is the best and greatest gift we could ever receive.  It is not something we can buy instore or online.  It was a gift that was freely given to us, that came at a great cost – from the giver’s perspective – and for one which I will be eternally grateful for.

Heavenly Father,

Thank you for your word.  Thank you for making your word flesh.  Thank you that your word is a spiritual sword and we’re able to pierce the lies of the enemy.  Thank you for giving us the best and most expensive, self-less Christmas gift – a true treasure.  Thank you for Jesus’ grace, mercy, love and teachings.  Thank you for the Holy Spirit – that we’re never alone and are guided by you and into truth.  Your love for us is immense and unconditional and our love for you comes from all of our heart, mind, body and soul.  Lord, we pray for the people of the world – for those that see the message of the cross as foolishness and for those who are spiritually blind to Jesus.  Like Saul, I pray that they may have a life altering encounter with Jesus.  Heal their blindness, enable them to see – enable them to see His greatness, your Greatness, your wonder and Glory and all the blessing you have waiting upon their lives.  Give them a story; a testimony that only you could write – being the author and finisher of their faith.  My love for you is immense and I want nothing more than others to experience what it is like to be in your light, and love.  In Jesus name I pray, amen.

‘Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law.’  (Psalm 119:18 ESV)

Dear reader, may your new year, 2021 be filled with God’s grace, peace and blessings.

Until next time, God willing, W.A.R on with praise and prayer. 


Author: Elizabeth New

Copyright © 2020

All Rights Reserved.

Your Heavenly Father Provides

About a week ago, I logged onto Facebook and was notified that I had memories – of things that happened on this day a year ago and beyond.  I scrolled and found this from 6 years ago – 14th of December 2014:

“Went to make bread to discover no yeast in the cupboard and used last dregs of coffee grind this morning.  The thought of dragging Immanuel (*) to the supermarket filled me with dread so I asked my dad if he had any spare at home and yes!!  So now I am with coffee and in process of making bread!!  I can function now.  (Thank you!!)”

I can remember asking or writing about this.  At the time, I had just become Christian and a week prior to that date – I had stood up in what became our church and told the congregation my testimony.  And this Facebook status was a half-censored testimony.  The parts I left out were the parts that pointed back to the glory of God – such as: ask and you will receive – go to your (heavenly) Father and he will provide all you need.  I also left out the part where I probably had less than $20 is my purse to see me through until being paid the following week.  And dragging my son through the supermarket was a small amount of dread – the larger portion of dread was getting to the checkout and not being able to afford all the items that I couldn’t say no to with a hungry four year old by my side.  The dread I felt had to do with the shame and guilt that comes with the embarrassment of saying: ‘um… I don’t have enough money – I’ll need to take out a few items…’  That was not how I envisioned doing life – as a single parent scrapping what I had left together and at times (most times), too embarrassed to ask for help.

The gratitude in that post was being thankful to my earthly father for meeting those simple needs – of coffee and yeast.  But it was also a gratitude post to my heavenly Father for allowing my earthly father to have the grace to provide for me.  He could have said ‘no’ but he still chose to say ‘yes’.  I was in need and in that moment, I went to my Father and I asked and by his grace I received.

I felt, as I re-read that memory – I felt the Holy Spirit say – this will be your next post – this will be your testimony in this moment – it will be the thing that keeps someone going.  So, I don’t know who this is for – or who you are or what you may be going through – perhaps it’s a season of financial hardship, or single parenting – but I felt I needed to write this to encourage you – to say it won’t always be like this.  It won’t always be like this.  It will pass.  That is a promise – I am declaring that over your life – it will pass.  It will pass.  It will pass.  It will.  And one day, you will look back on this day as a memory – you will see and remember the struggle – but you will also know that in that struggle you were protected, sustained and provided for – because God’s love for you is unconditional – just like my own and your own earthly Father’s love. (Whoa!! That’s hitting hard – straight in my spirit – tears were rolling as I wrote that!!)

For me, it took six years to move out of financial hardship.  Six years from the time that FB post was written but about 10 years in total.  That’s a long time to be struggling to make ends meet – and for some it can last a lifetime.  But in it, there is a lesson.  I’ve learnt having little to no money is stressful and limiting – and yet, it is humbling.  It enables you to see and experience how generous others can be when you are in need.  I can remember, when my son was four, I found out he needed glasses – and this filled me with dread – as the first thing I wondered was – how am I ever going to pay for it as lenses and glasses frames can be costly.  I mentioned this in passing to a friend and a few days later she handed me some money to contribute to the glasses.  And some was even her birthday money (God bless her) – she sacrificed her birthday money to help meet the needs of my son.  That is just one example of the generosity I experienced – which came through the love of Jesus and from our Heavenly Father.  He always came through – he always provided for us – he always sustained us!

I have also learnt that God is the source – everything comes from Him.  I may do earthly work and money may appear into my account, but that money still comes from God.  And He is the one who has enabled and equipped me, made a position for me to work in and made my account grow.  Now, I know that the bible says, you cannot worship money and God – as money is the root of all evil.  And blessed are the poor for they will be rich in spirit.  The thing that stands out to me the most is key word – worship – don’t worship or idolise money – don’t place your focus here first –  in your desperate fight for money it may take your focus away from God – it may take you down a wide, messy and destructive path and further away from the plans and blessings He has over your life.  (An example that comes to mind, it may be a little extreme but sometimes when I come across stories in the news of drug syndicates getting busted – I don’t celebrate their incarceration or feel anger or hatred towards them – but I could see that at the bottom of all of this – these people were money hungry – and perhaps that is because they know what it’s like to have little to no money – so when something brings in the promise of big dollars – like drugs – all they’re seeing is the end result – but the result is never enough and its an insatiable hunger – so without realising it they are worshiping money – idolising it and will do whatever it takes to get their hands on that money – leading down a wide path of destruction.  That’s what I see when I see these stories pop up – and perhaps there is more to it than that – there always is.  It also reminds me that we live in the devils playground, and he will tempt us – tell us that we’re not enough and try to take us away from God, in whatever form that comes in – and it may come in the form of money…)  

And perhaps, this is a reminder to place your focus first on God – worship God first and your needs will be met.  In the memory mentioned above, I went to my (earthly) father first when all I wanted was some coffee and yeast and my needs were met.  I feel so strongly, that the Holy Spirit wants me to remind you – just as you would go to your own earthly Father or Mother or person you trust – that God wants you to go to him first.  Go to him first – tell him all your needs, your worries and concerns – go to him first as you would your own family or friends.  He already knows your needs but He still wants you to go to him first.  Go to him first and know in advance you will have your needs met – He is the good Shepheard, and with him, you will lack nothing.

Matthew 6:24 -34 (NIV) says:

24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.

Do Not Worry

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?

28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own….

(I love God’s word and I love how the Holy Spirit works!!  As I was writing the above – the verse on money and not worrying about tomorrow came to mind.  I looked them up to include them here but didn’t realise they were connected and in the same chapter.  And for me – that’s when I know God’s in this, and I am not simply writing this out of my own strength.)

So, my dear reader – whatever you are going through right now – it will pass – it will.  God will and is sustaining and providing for you as we speak – keep your focus on Him first – go to Him first and the rest will fall into place.

Heavenly Father,

Thank you for all that you do for us and for all that you continue to do for us.  We love you and trust you and know that you will not forsake us – forget us – for your love is unconditional and you know all our needs and will meet them.  Lord, we’re sorry when we do not turn to you first but try to do things on our own – to meet our own needs first – then when that doesn’t work we turn to you.  I guess, at times, we still have that rebellious child in us – we want to be independent – where we can try and do things on our own.  But we’re slow to learn because we can’t do things on our own – we need you – because without you, we make or eventually will make a proper mess of things – not intentionally of-course – but this is to acknowledge that we do need you – first and always.  We need you all the time and in all aspects of our lives.  And we’re sorry when we forget and don’t put you first or go to you first as you want us to.  Yet you are so kind and patient and wait for us to turn to you – and when we do – you’re so pleased and listen; you’re quick to listen to all we have to say (and slow to anger). And you guide us, refine us, keep us (safe, protected and provided for) and enable us to keep moving forward.  Thank you Father, we return our gaze and attention to you and to Jesus – and may the Holy Spirit gently guide our us back to you when our eyes are/become distracted by the world – in Jesus’ mighty and glorious name I pray, amen.

Thank you for reading, may God bless in this season.  Until next time, God willing, W.A.R on with praise and prayer.

*Changed my sons name for privacy reasons.*


Author: Elizabeth New

Copy Right © 2020

All Rights Reserved.