Kris Mares

Just a woman trying to love Jesus and others a little bit more…

And Now I See May 7, 2011

I FINALLY went to the eye doctor this week. I’ve needed to go for a long time now, but no vision coverage and being broke means that mom takes a back seat to the kids’ needs. When we moved, I had a couple of contacts left. I was on my last pair and then got an eye infection. That meant that the glasses went on.

I never, well hardly ever, wear my glasses. I just don’t like wearing them. I much prefer contacts. Well, after my eye cleared up, I didn’t have any contacts left, so I had to keep my glasses on. I could see, but not nearly as well. When I would go to the eye doctor and my prescription changed, I would just get new contacts, knowing that my glasses were always “just a back up.”

So three months have gone by and I was finally able to get myself into an eye doctor. Wrestling three small children into an eye exam room is no fun. Add trying to see an eye chart into that mix… let’s just say I’m amazed that we even got the exam done.

So now I have my complementary pair of contacts from the doc. Man I can see so much better. I knew my glasses were several “upgrades” old, but I didn’t realize HOW bad my vision was. I’m so glad that I can now see.

It struck me that my eye experience resembles pieces of a Christian faith walk too. We worship regularly, have God moments in which our spiritual sight is fine-tuned and clarified. We’re doing well.

But then something happens – a hurt, an illness, a sin, a doubt – and our vision is blurred. We may not fully realize how weak our faith has become. How blurry the line between holiness and sinfulness has become. We think we can see just fine.

Then the Holy Spirit intervenes. We get a “check-up” and the scales are removed from our eyes. The Spirit reveals how cloudy our vision has become. We rejoice over our renewed God-sight and repent of the blurred vision we lived in.

As I have enjoyed a day of clear, crisp sight, I fully long for clear God-vision where I can fully see myself and this life as He does. And I rejoice for each time that the Holy Spirit has revealed to me just how bad my vision was (even if those appointments were difficult to get through).

(By the way, I got a great deal on my contacts through Coastal Contacts. Just under $20 a box and that included shipping! “Like” their Facebook page and get a code for 20% off your first order. Use the link above and I’ll get bonus credit too!)


Radical February 3, 2011

I recently finished reading Radical by David Platt. Sometimes I’m a little skeptical of Christian books that try to tell me I’m not living enough for Jesus. Not that I’m living a perfect Jesus-centered life; like many others, I just don’t like being told I’m not “Christian” enough. Radical, however, made me think. It urged me to examine, re-think and move forward. It challenged me. It told me, in a loving, challenging, urgent way, that I can and should be more radical in how I share the Good News with the world.

Radical challenges the “American Dream” that we can do all and be all that we create ourselves to be. The point is that WE can’t really do it ourselves. For Christians, it is Christ working in us that helps us do and be all God wants us to be. Instead of asking “how will this new car meet our family needs,” we should be asking “how can this new car meet God’s need to use our family to share the Gospel?” See the difference?

And then there is the one-year experiment. For one year, Platt asks us to do five things: 1. Pray for the entire world; 2. Read through the entire Word; 3. Sacrifice your money for a specific purpose; 4. Spend your time in another context; 5. Commit your life to a multiplying community. Just five things for one year. Seems easy huh? Well, those five things could radically change your life. They would mine.

I am different because of reading Radical.

So how am I different? Well, after reading the book I want to be more intentional about praying for the country of little girl my family sponsors through Compassion International. I also want to be more aware of and pray more for foreign missionaries serving in the denomination I worship within. I also want to pick back up my Bible and truly read the whole thing. A year might be a crunch for me, but we’ll see. I also want to sponsor more children through Compassion International and seriously look at opening our home to foster children. And last, our family needs to make a decision about church membership. We need to fully embrace our new local church and transfer our membership from the church family we still love, to the new church family that we are learning to love.

To download and read the first chapter of Radical, get extra material to help you through the Radical Experiment and to see a video featuring the author, click here.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.  And since I’m done with this book, I’ll be passing it on to my best friend – a woman like me who struggles to balance life while living radically for the Jesus we love.


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