What things do you notice in everyday life?
Which things do you often miss, go unnoticeable?
When you notice something you didn’t before, how does that change things for you?
I think there is a difference between being noticed and being seen,
would you agree? For example, you go to a social gathering: do you sometimes wish to go unnoticed? At times, when you to the grocery store, are you in a hurry or just not wanting to interact much with people, and so, do you hope that you won’t be noticed?
Some of you reading this often don’t want to be noticed because you always are. That could be because of your appearance, your gender identification or expression, the clothes you wear, or the language you speak. So it makes sense that you sometimes just want to blend in. Being noticed isn’t always that great.
Being seen, though, as you are, and accepted, that is another story. Yes, it’s about vulnerability and that can be scary for some [particularly if you’ve been rejected or shamed]. But I’m referring to the type of seeing that people do when they truly accept you and don’t judge you.
Those moments when you cease to become a minority, a label, or a stereotype. You are known as you are.
In John’s Gospel, people are being seen and also seeing. People are finding Jesus and finding themselves. is an aha moment, unexpected, and also when you find yourself and who you are called to be.
God has chosen to be found, to be known, in the most intimate way possible. God is more than aware of our fears and doubts. In the season of aha/epiphany, Jesus is revealed as a manifestation of the Divine and yet in the most humanly way possible. This is to remind us that we are not just noticed but truly seen and accepted and loved as we are. People, in the Gospel stories, are invited to come and see. We, during this season of aha moments, are invited to see ourselves through the lens of love and fullness. There will be days when you don’t expect to feel full and whole, but then this epiphany comes. The shines on you and in you, and you see—you are loved. You are seen.
In this John story, Jesus notices and sees and calls Philip. Philip finds Nathaniel and tells him the good news, who he has found. Nathaniel, though, steeped in surface-level judgment, sees nothing in Jesus but a Nazarene. What good can come out of such a place? Sound familiar
Anyone from a so-called sh&thole country?
Nathaniel [and I wish the current WH administration] is invited to leave the shadow of the fig tree, stop judging people, and to come and see with new eyes.
Wherever you are in this moment, see people as they are. Accept them. This does not go unnoticed. Much love.