Are you ready for some good news?
God wants to use your eyes to connect with the world in a mystical, revelatory way.
In Acts 3, on their way into the temple to pray, Peter and John encounter a lame man asking for alms. Peter stops, seemingly does a double take, and tells the man to “look at us.” After locking eyes with him, Peter says, “rise up and walk,” and the man is miraculously healed.
The Greek text implies that Peter did a “double take.” As he walked by the beggar, Peter glanced at the poor man and then the disciple paused and looked again, this time intently.
What’s happening here?
Eye contact is mysterious.
We can all feel it – there is something transcendent and intimate in the locking of eyes.
Studies show that three-year-old children are so shaped by the power of eye contact that they believe if they cover their eyes they can’t be seen.
Humans are significantly more likely to remember faces with which they have had eye contact. Studies show that people’s feelings are hurt when a stranger looks away. We don’t concentrate as well in word response tests when there is a video of a face making eye contact (it’s why sometimes, if you are thinking hard, you look away for a moment). And, perhaps most mesmerizing of all, when you look deeply into someone’s eyes, your pupils begin to mimic the other person’s pupils. If their pupils dilate, so do yours. And vice versa.
Peter’s gaze is being directed by the Holy Spirit. It’s like the Spirit is looking at this man through Peter’s eyes. It’s God saying Wait, Peter, see what I see. I want to look at this man, and I want you to see him, too.
That is the desire of God’s heart for you. By equipping your eyes, God invites you into His ministry. When the Holy Spirit directs your gaze, you’ll see miracles before they happen, not just bear witness to them afterward. And that’s the Gospel!