Come and See

Have you ever gotten out of bed in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom? Perhaps you don’t want to wake anyone else up. Or maybe, if you live alone like I do, you just know that it’s going to hurt your eyes if you turn on the lights. So, you push back the covers, slide your feet to the floor—carefully avoiding the sleeping dog that’s lying in the vicinity, and stumble to your feet. Then, you take three steps and BAM!—you remember the hard way that you recently moved the extra chair into your bedroom because you were tired of tripping over it in the hallway.

That’s what most of my life is like. I stumble around in the dark. I try not to inconvenience anyone or disrupt their lives. And I know that if I turn on the light, it’s going to hurt my eyes. So, I blindly go through the motions and as I do, I find that it really doesn’t work very well and that I run into painful circumstances.

There’s more than one problem with these scenarios.

First, I have to turn on the light to see. Really, it’s not that hard. Thanks to a very bright security light just outside my bedroom window, even with heavy blinds and a curtain, I can still see enough in my bedroom to find the switch on my bedside lamp. And because it’s a three-way bulb, I can turn it on pretty low and it’s not going to hurt my eyes that badly. But it will hurt some and that dread and fear keeps me from reaching from the light switch. And I’m going to break my toes on the furniture every time. (Yet somehow, that fear and the memory of that pain isn’t enough to cause me to turn on the light. How dumb is that?!)

Second, this feels very weird to say, but bear with me a minute… I have to stop worrying about being an inconvenience and a disruption. To protect myself, sometimes, I need to turn on the light, no matter who it wakes up or inconveniences or disrupts. Let me be really, really real here for a minute: my life has been in the dark enough and the wounds have had years to fester. It’s time to turn the light on and run the lies out of the shadows. And if that’s an inconvenience or a disruption to someone, they need to examine their own hearts and figure out why. (Do you get the feeling we’re no longer talking about my bedroom and its furniture? Well, you’re only half right.)

And now, let me jump the tracks a little. When we’re talking about my bedroom and my furniture and my multiple broken toes, the only person being hurt in this scenario is me. But in real life, when I stumble in the dark and refuse to turn on the light, I’m not just hurting myself. I’m hurting everyone in my life. I’m hurting the people that love me. I’m hurting the people that count on me. I’m hurting everyone I come into contact with because I’m not being the best me that I can be.

Tonight, I was reading the first chapter of the Gospel of John and I was struck by something I’d never really seen before. Look with me a minute:

John 1:35-39, 43-46 (NIV)

35The next day John was there again with two of his disciples. 36When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God!”

 37When the two disciples heard him say this, they followed Jesus. 38Turning around, Jesus saw them following and asked, “What do you want?”
      They said, “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are you staying?”

 39“Come,” he replied, “and you will see.”
      So they went and saw where he was staying, and spent that day with him. It was about the tenth hour.

43The next day Jesus decided to leave for Galilee. Finding Philip, he said to him, “Follow me.”

 44Philip, like Andrew and Peter, was from the town of Bethsaida. 45Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”

 46“Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked.
      “Come and see,” said Philip.

In this chapter, Jesus is beginning to choose his followers. And the very first invitation he gives is, “come and see.” Later in the chapter, when Philip invites Nathanael to follow Jesus, he says the same thing: “come and see.”

Reading tonight, those two phrases reached out and grabbed me and wouldn’t let me go. Why wouldn’t they let me go?

Because that’s what God said to me when He created me in the workroom of Heaven. And when he birthed me into this world through my parents. And every step as I’ve walked through this world. He’s held my hand and said, “Come and see this world I’ve created for you. Come and see this world that I’ve created you for. Come and see everything I have in store for you. Join me on the adventure. Let me lead you and guide you and travel with you and love you and protect you and heal you and work through you.”

I’m turning on the light because I’m beginning to want to see every step of this journey with Him.

What about you? Are you walking in the light? Are you enjoying the journey with Him? If you aren’t walking in the light and enjoying the journey, are you willing to trust Him enough to step into the light and walk with Him? Just remember—it’s okay to be where you are—as long as you don’t stay there.

About Sarah Salter

Comments

  1. Nice.

    Yeah, I kick myself a lot like that.

  2. Sarah, well-written and profound. I’m trusting, trying to walk in the light as He provides it. But, I can absolutely relate because I’ve been there. Be encouraged.

  3. I love the wisdom that the Lord is showing you.

    “I’m not just hurting myself. I’m hurting everyone in my life.” ThAnks for showing me my need to repent for the same. it is selfish to think we are the only one affected by our choices.

    Well said, Sarah, wel said.

  4. Sometimes I drop something when I’m up in the middle of the night, and I have to turn on the light in my room to pick it up so that a) I don’t trip on it and REALLY disturb Bob’s sleep because he’d have to drive me to the hospital with a broken ankle and b) If Bob gets up in the middle of the night he could stumble on what I dropped and hurt himself. 1o seconds of disturbance as opposed to however long it takes to recover from an injury…

    I know. I tend to focus on one part of a post and get a little stuck. Poor Jason (@br8kthru) has to deal with that on his posts almost daily. See how he suffers….

  5. Sarah Salter says:

    Helen, I think I can speak for “poor” Jason and say that YOU ARE A JOY! Comments from you aren’t to be suffered. They are to be treasured! Thank you!

  6. First off, Helen is a joy and I like to tell her often! 🙂

    Second, great post, Sarah! Love how you brought it all together. Speaking of disturbances, I sometimes have a hard time convincing those in our church that if they have something they need to talk about it that I’ll make time. They sometimes don’t want to “bother” me but then will stew so long in things that they end up leaving. Then I’m really disturbed! Pastors aren’t mind readers and if you think we should be spiritual enough to “know” what’s going on, then I can’t help very much. Many times, we just have to reach out for help.

    As for the passage you mentioned, I saw a different thought jump out at me. Jesus tells the ones “come and see” then Philip tells another “come and see.” What a beautifully simple breakdown of evangelism! It’s an invitation to come and see Jesus. Of course, if we don’t lead them to the real Jesus, there’s a problem, but that’s another story.

    Rambling complete. 🙂

  7. Sarah Salter says:

    Jason- Please, come by and ramble anytime! What a ploy of the enemy– to talk us into isolating ourselves and then, tell us that we’ve been ignored or neglected. It’s happened to me more than once. Another ploy is to tell us that we arent’ worth the time of our pastors or leadership. Been there, done that. (Still overcoming that.) The enemy will just try anything to tear the body apart. And these are some of his favorite tricks. However, just keep in mind that you, as a pastor, cannot be everywhere at once. The other “body parts” around you need to also be on the look-out for each other. They need to know that helping each other isn’t just “Pastor’s Job.” It’s ALL of our responsibility to nourish and nurture and heal and help each other. And that insight on “come and see”? Good stuff, Jason! GOOD stuff! 🙂

  8. Have you been living inside my head?? Oy.

    Message duly noted…
    Thanks, and love you!

  9. Sounds like me getting up in the middle of the night to feed Brilee! I have to turn on the light to change her diaper or else I wouldn’t be able to get all the mess! God can’t change our “dirty mess” if we don’t turn on the light, huh?

  10. Sarah Salter says:

    Amber, that’s a GREAT analogy! Thanks for stopping in and sharing it! 🙂

  11. I have the privilege of serving as Sarah’s pastor…..and I would just like to say she is as delightful and brave as her writings!

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