Looking beyond

Looking beyond

Elisha prayed, “O LORD, open his eyes and let him see!” The LORD opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire. – 2 Kings 6:17

2 Kings 6:15-17

 15 When the servant of the man of God got up early the next morning and went outside, there were troops, horses, and chariots everywhere. “Oh, sir, what will we do now?” the young man cried to Elisha.

 16 “Don’t be afraid!” Elisha told him. “For there are more on our side than on theirs!”

 17 Then Elisha prayed, “O LORD, open his eyes and let him see!” The LORD opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire.

Laurel and Hardy one of the most popular comedy teams of the early Hollywood era of American cinema. Stan Laurel was rather thin and Oliver Hardy was rather large. They were quite popular from the late 1920s to the mid-1940s. Audiences loved their humorous and entertaining movies.

During their comedic journey across the silver screen, they often found themselves in many oddball situations with questionable results. Oliver was mostly responsible yet he was quick to blame Stan saying, “Well, here’s another nice mess you’ve gotten me into.” Said with a chagrined pouty face, this one-liner became their catchphrase. It was used in over 15 of their films.

Children of the King occasionally find themselves in disturbing predicaments because of the choices they make. Life is filled with uncertainty. How do we make the best decisions? The Father gave us minds to observe, calculate, and use logic to think things through. But in the Father’s kingdom there is much more.

Sometimes insight does not come from great effort and perspiration, but rather via inspiration.

In the Father’s kingdom, children of the King are to walk by faith and not by sight alone. Natural human sight is limited to the physical world that can be seen and observed. However, there are unseen realities that are not visible to the human eye.

Elisha and his servant found themselves in a very hard place. They were surrounded by enemies who had come to do them harm. They had no human resources with which to resist them. But Elisha was aware of something that his servant was not. Elisha could see the unseen. Elisha knew that the Father had dispatched an army of angels to protect him and his servant. Heaven’s angelic army came in the power and authority of the Father, the commander of Heaven’s army. Before Heaven’s army, the Syrian forces were impotent.  

Elisha the prophet was a seer. He could see the Father’s angels, but his servant could not. Elisha was fearless because he saw with the eyes of faith. The angels were more than a match for the Syrian army. Elisha wanted his fearful servant be able to see as he did. Elisha prayed that the eyes of his servant would be opened to see the unseen.

2 Kings 6:17 Elisha prayed, “O LORD, open his eyes and him see!”

A whole new reality opened for his servant. It is a reality only seen by the eyes of faith. The angelic armies had been there all along yet unseen by natural human eyes. So many things remain invisible to those who do not see by faith.

“Trusting God means looking beyond what we can see to what God sees” (Stanley).


Our natural vision is limited by what our physical eyes can see. Our spiritual vision has no limitations. The eyes of our hearts become open and receptive to seeing the invisible.

Father so often I do not know what to do. I am limited in my human resources. Allow me to learn to tap into Your resources and walk by faith and not by sight alone.


Elisha was a servant leader and a man of faith. He routinely saw the unseen. That is what brought him into the present circumstances of being surrounded by his enemies. Aram, the king of Syria, was at war with Israel. He had drawn up secret plans for attack. Each time his plans were thwarted. He was furious and decided there must be a spy within his ranks that was betraying him.

There was a spy all right. But that spy was Elisha.

2 Kings 6:12 “Elisha, the prophet in Israel, tells the king of Israel even the words you speak in the privacy of your bedroom!”

Elisha had prophetic insight; he could see the unseen. Geographical distance and palace walls were not obstacles to him.

A leader knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way (John C. Maxwell). A leader can translate vision into reality, faith into substance, hope into conviction. A boss drives, a leader – leads. A leader is optimistic and upbeat. Challenges are not overlooked nor ignored, they are taken into consideration and overcome. Ultimately the leader is defined by optimism, courage, planning, and implementation.

“The task of the leader is to get his people from where they are to where they have not been” (Henry Kissinger).

2 Corinthians 4:18 We look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Paul’s absolute confidence in the Father’s promise and power rips away the veil of limited physical sight. The chasm between the seen and unseen, the temporary and the eternal is bridged by the eyes of faith.

2 Corinthians 5:7 We walk by faith, not by sight

“If we think only of the things that are visible, we are bound to see life that way. But there is another way. The writer to the Hebrews said of Moses: ‘He persevered as though he saw him who is invisible (Hebrews 11:27)” (Barclay).

Supernatural sight, that is, seeing the invisible, comes through faith in the One who is Himself invisible. It is a paradox. It cannot be documented through empirical experiments in a laboratory.

Ephesians 1:18 I pray that eyes of your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called.

What do you see, enemies or the angels of Heaven’s army?


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