Guest / Limited Access /

I recently found myself in worship singing,

Open the eyes of my heart, Lord
Open the eyes of my heart
I want to see You
I want to see You.

And then I ducked.

I ducked because I suddenly remembered that God had warned Moses that if Moses actually saw God, he would instantly die. Instead, God offered to cover Moses' eyes while he passed by, and then, once he passed by Moses, to let Moses see his "backside."

Since I didn't want to die that instant—I had a playoff game to watch after church—I stopped singing. But I didn't want others to think I didn't love God, so I started singing again, but quietly, with a revised text:

Cover the eyes of my heart, Lord
Cover the eyes of my heart
I want to see your backside
I want to see your backside.

This version failed to inspire me for some reason, so I stopped singing the chorus again, even though it risked my Christian reputation. Still, I joined in heartily at these lines:

To see you high and lifted up
Shining in the light of your glory
Lord, pour out your power and love
as we sing Holy, Holy, Holy.

And then I remembered that, according to Paul, "high and lifted up" is precisely where God is not to be found. I was singing like those who expect to see God in wondrous signs and others who think they'll find him in glorious wisdom. But Paul said that Jesus is not to be found "high and lifted up" but "down and lowly": "For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified" (1 Cor. 1:22–23, ESV). So I began revising these lines:

 To see you low and despised
Shining in the light of your glory …
Lord, pour out your weakness and love
As we sing Holy, Holy, Holy.

That last part—about "pour out your weakness and love"—just came to me, ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

SoulWork
In "SoulWork," Mark Galli brings news, Christian theology, and spiritual direction together to explore what it means to be formed spiritually in the image of Jesus Christ.
Mark Galli
Mark Galli is Editor of Christianity Today in Carol Stream, Illinois.
Previous SoulWork Columns:
Support Christian thought journalism. Donate to our nonprofit ministry today.
Read These NextSee Our Latest
Current IssueChristianity Today’s 2017 Book of the Year
Subscriber Access Only Christianity Today’s 2017 Book of the Year
The release that best embodies our pursuit of Beautiful Orthodoxy.
RecommendedThe Truth of Scorsese’s Faithless Characters
The Truth of Scorsese’s Faithless Characters
In an interview with CT, ‘Silence’ director reveals why he is drawn to ‘wretches.’
TrendingThe Story Behind Trump’s Controversial Prayer Partner
The Story Behind Trump’s Controversial Prayer Partner
What Paula White’s Washington moment implies for the prosperity gospel’s future.
Editor's PickThe Church’s Integrity in the Trump Years
The Church’s Integrity in the Trump Years
It begins by recognizing the name above every name.
Christianity Today
Looking for Jesus in All the Wrong Places
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

January 2012

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.