It was an ordinary kitchen. Nothing unusual or spectacular about it. But I walked into it and was dazzled.
A prism hung in the window, catching the early morning light and throwing spectacular colors and shapes across the kitchen. Swatches of pure hues moved slowly across ordinary things: dishcloths, countertop, curtains, carpet, calendar, and even trash can.
The prism turned the mundane into an oasis of rainbows.
This was the Spirit’s lesson for me that morning. I had just read this passage in 1 Corinthians 2:10-11:
But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets. No one can know a person’s thoughts except that person’s own spirit, and no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own Spirit.
The Spirit leans in and whispers the secrets of God to those listening. Doesn’t that astound you?
Here the word secrets does not mean some knowledge that will be kept from all but a chosen few. It refers instead to things that have previously been hidden or unseen or unknown. The Spirit tunes us into things we cannot otherwise know about God’s thoughts and ways.
Even though God’s ways are so much higher than ours, He gives us this connection to Himself. He wants us to know Him. The Spirit tunes us into His thinking. The world’s spirit would like to fill our ears and minds and wills and hearts, but the Spirit of Jesus Christ lives within to fill us with Himself.
Now to the lesson of the prism.
This always amazes me: The light, to which we normally give little thought or attention, holds a treasure of delightful color. The hues are there all the time, they surround us completely and constantly, yet we do not see them or delight in them until the prism shows what is there.
Here’s the next verse in 1 Corinthians 2 (verse 12):
And we have received God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us.
The Spirit hangs a prism to open our eyes to what we would otherwise miss. Like the colors in light we ignore, God’s hand is in every moment of our lives. The psalmist says that God’s blessing goes in front of us and behind us, and this 1 Corinthians passage tells us that one of the reasons God gives us His Spirit is so that we can see all the “wonderful things God has freely given us.”
Wow. The Almighty Lord and Creator of the universe gives us this intimate connection to Himself that helps us understand His thoughts and see what He is doing in our lives and in the world. He wants us to know Him. He wants us to see Him.
And the sight the Spirit gives us transforms our circumstances. Where others might see ordinary and even drab, or troublesome and painful, eyes opened by the Spirit see God’s gifts, His goodness, His love, His mercies, His blessing. We see God’s hand where we have not realized it before. We enjoy His presence where we have ignored it before. We find His blessing splashed over even our struggles and sorrows.
When the Spirit starts to show us God’s goodness and love over every bit of our lives, coloring every day on the calendar and drenching even our trash cans,
then we begin to see and know what is always there—the goodness and mercy that follow us all the days of our lives.