Noticed, But Not Seen

by Sep 30, 2021Devotional4 comments

Proverbs 3:28 If you can help your neighbor now, don’t say, “Come back tomorrow, and then I’ll help you.”

      As I walked by the homeless man on the street, I notice him, but I do not see him for who he is, or who he was before he became homeless. I do not see the fact that he has a mother, maybe a sister or even children. I only see the shell of a person who is begging and starring out to nowhere with the thousand-yard stare. I’m sure he once had dreams and ambitions that somehow lost meaning along the way. Who’s to say he still does not have goals or a dream of getting off of the street. Maybe I could find out for sure if I stopped and talked with him, but as I walk by him, I only notice his shabbiness and clearly, I do not see his heart. We tend to notice the homeless, but we do not see them or their plight.
      Lately, we are seeing the native Indigenous population in Canada because so many unmarked graves have been discovered. This atrocity is pointing out to the world what the First Nations people have always known – the barbarity of our historic and present legislative decisions had only caused this segment of society to be noticed but not seen as a people. However, after discovering numerous unmarked graves that the native population knew were always there, we are now seeing these people. Hopefully, we can honestly be reconciled in spirit and in truth and not just offer platitudes and clichés of “We have to try harder, blah blah blah.” Prov. 3:28 If you can help your neighbor now, don’t say, “Come back tomorrow, and then I’ll help you.”
      If it was not for the pandemic, it would not have been revealed how terrible we have been treating our elderly by stuffing them away in poorly governed care homes. We would have continued to just notice the elderly and not see them the way the Lord sees them. Psalm 92:14 Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green. Even though the word of the Lord says the elderly will bear fruit in old age, our solipsistic lifestyles have no room for those who are elderly and in need. Maybe now that we have seen them, we can improve on the way we take care of them.
      At some time in our life, we have all experienced being noticed but not seen for who we truly are. Some people feel like a non-person as they plod along in life. The people who feel they are living a nonexistent life will have to decide in their hearts to make an effort to see and acknowledge others who are feeling the same way they do. If we want friends, we have to extend a hand of friendship. We do reap what we sow. We will have to sow some honest effort into seeing others if we want to be seen. We will have to push through the haze of life and see others rather than just notice the crowds. If you are lonely then reach out to the lonely. If you are depressed then reach out to those who are suffering the same sadness. Luke 6:38a Give, and it shall be given unto you.    
      There is hope. Our God knows exactly where we are on the world map. James 1:1b To the twelve tribes scattered among the nations: Greetings. He knows our address and our situation. The Lord sees us for who He made us to be in Him. Some people may feel like they are neither noticed nor seen, but rest assured, our heavenly Father is looking at us individually right now, and planning our future. The Lord knows us intimately. Jer. 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” God sees all our situations throughout our whole life. Psalm 121:8 The LORD keeps watch over you as you come and go, both now and forever. To the Lord, we are never nonexistent nor a non-person. We are His chosen creation.
      As I get older in years, I hope that I can mature in my heart where I see my fellow man the way the Lord sees them rather than just notice them. It would be impossible to see everyone on earth, however, we can start by seeing our children and finding out what is one their hearts. We can begin to see our neighbours, cashiers at the stores we frequent, and those we come in contact with regularly. We can sincerely ask the people in the church assemblies we attend, “How their souls are holding up during these difficult days.” Taking the time to see the other people God created will help us see ourselves for who we truly are. May we rise to the challenge that is set before us and begin to see. God have mercy on us.

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  1. sirnorm1

    Thank you Ian
    God is not finished with us yet. We are an ongoing salvation project in the Lord's eternal plan. What a blessing to be part of it.

  2. Ian Pike

    A very challenging message, it is so good to see that there is change in our lives, especially in the way that we see people because people are important to God. Again thank you for your continual encouragement. Blessings Ian

  3. sirnorm1

    I agree with your assessment of my prejudice. This is why I said in the paragraph you are referring to, "Maybe I could find out for sure if I stopped and talked with him."
    That is the point as we tend to just notice them and not see the real reasons for where they are at.
    Thank you for your input, and blessings to you.

  4. Unknown

    Great message Norm. One point though, your comments about the Homeless were still subject to a futuristic idea of the person. It is hard to see it but there is still a built in prejudice here. It is the assumption that if he were to dream it would be to dream to get off the street: "I'm sure he once had dreams and ambitions that somehow lost meaning along the way. Who's to say he still does not have goals or a dream of getting off of the street."

    You must remember Daniel Tellifer (I know this is misspelled, sorry) He told me once that he loved being homeless. It was an adventure for him and he didn't want the weight of the responsibility of rent, maintaining home, etc. This changed my idea that every person out there is trying to "get off the street." To truly see someone we can't have this type of preconceived idea that they are always hoping for something different.

    Love you buddy.


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