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at Arizona State University - 340 E. 15th Street, Tempe, AZ 85281-6612 (480) 967-3543 (map)
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Glasses and Discipleship

Pastor Gary McCluskey
Pastor Gary N. McCluskey

Pastor's Notes
Gary N. McCluskey, Pastor

I was a junior in high school. As I stepped outside into the downtown square of Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, I wondered, "What will my friends think when they see me now?".  

It was the late days of fall and the daytime sky was fast becoming an evening sky. I looked around and was astounded by the brightness of neon signs announcing the retail tenants of the downtown buildings. The colors on the Yellow Cabs and passing cars were both brighter and bolder than I could ever recall seeing. I was not able to see anything I had not seen before; I was just seeing things more vividly and more colorfully. You see, I was stepping out from the office of my optometrist. For the first time ever I glasses. Corrective lenses my driver's license called them. The fresh view made me realize I needed glasses after all.

Oh, there were some adjustments to be made. Judging and catching a fly ball in the outfield had to be relearned. So did batting. And, would that pain behind my left ear where the glasses' arm wrapped around it ever go away? 

Now, of course I rarely even think of my glasses. They have become a part of me. Get up. Put them on. Take them off before showers, swimming, or going to bed. Most all of the world I have seen for forty-seven years has been through lenses. Beautiful sights, ordinary sights, horrific sights. 

A children's sermon I have often used involves using my glasses as an object lesson. "Jesus,", I say, "is the lens through which we view life and the world." I'm not sure if little ones get it. Perhaps they are the wrong target audience. Perhaps we adults need such reminding. As those who follow Jesus, it is through the lens of this Jesus we are called to see the world. We are to look at our enemies through this lens. We are to view our neighbor through the lens of Jesus. And we are to determine who is our neighbor through the lens of Jesus. You and I are called to see the life and world as Jesus sees them. With eyes and hearts of love and care. 

Glasses are a good metaphor for discipleship. Corrective lenses indeed! We are gifted from birth. Yet we manage to misuse our gifts and often misuse them to our purposes, not the purposes for which we were given our gifts. Jesus comes to give us another view. Jesus comes to correct our vision. Jesus comes again and again 

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