Recently a friend posted a question on Facebook that launched me into a lot of thought about how I would answer.
She asked, “What is the first thing you notice about someone when you meet them for the first time?”
I Didn’t Know How To Answer
I have to admit that I could not answer that question. Why? I didn’t know.
As I pondered my answer my mind drifted back to a similar question someone asked me a long time ago.
It has been so long that I don’t remember who it was I was talking with but the conversation was about what we observe about people. And to make their point they asked me regarding someone we met, “What color are her eyes?”
The truth is, I had no idea.
The Eyes Have It
Fast forward to 2014. I was scrolling through my Facebook timeline when a picture of a dog appeared. A dog rescue organization posted the picture along with a brief description hoping someone would adopt her.
Ironically, all I noticed were her eyes. They were deep brown, soft, and kind. Yes, kind and they pierced my soul. So much so that I made the 50 plus mile trek to adopt her (I wrote about it here).
It was William Shakespeare who penned the line, “The eyes are the window to your soul.” But it was not original with him.
Check out what Jesus says in Matthew 6:22-24 (NLT) “Your eye is like a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is filled with light. But when your eye in unhealthy your whole body is filled with darkness. and if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!”
One day several years ago a coworker looked at me and said, “You have a headache today don’t you?” To which I replied, “Yes, but how did you know?” Her reply, “I can always tell by your eyes.”
I shared with her that my mom could always tell when I wasn’t feeling well and one day I asked her how she always knew. Her response was exactly the same as my coworkers.
It’s A Matter Of Focus
As I mulled over all my experiences and how important scripture says our eyes are, I made a decision. I decided that the first thing I will notice about someone when I meet them for the first time and every time thereafter is their eyes.
But there is one thing I need to do before I focus on the eyes of others. and that is make sure I focus my eyes on Jesus. If I lose sight of Him, it won’t matter what I notice first about others.
“Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed–that exhilarating finish in and with God.” – Hebrews 12:2 (MSG)
What I have come to realize is that if my eyes are not fixed unwaveringly on Jesus, I can not become who He created me to be and live my story. The story that includes being fully present when I am face to face with others.
With my eyes focused on Jesus, He will open the eyes of my heart to notice the story the eyes of those I meet are telling. To see their heart through His eyes, to notice what He would have me notice, and to love them as He would have me love them.
What do you notice first when you meet someone for the first time?