Seeing Faces in Unusual Places

by Joanna Pierce on June 06, 2018

When I was a child, I had a few creative tendencies. I could weave the wildest stories, play out the most elaborate drama with my Barbie dolls, and sing made-up melodies for hours (much to my parent’s chagrin). But, one of my more favorite creative pastimes was seeing shapes and faces in regular, mundane objects.

Looking skyward, I could see ducks, boats, and butterflies in the clouds above. Staring at the back of a door or a post, I’d locate the smallest and largest face-patterns ingrained in the knotted wood. And, lying on my back, I’d make out the oddest shapes in the rosebud textured ceiling.

I remember my Dad caught me mid-analysis one day and asked in a concerned tone, “What are you doing?” “Picking out the faces,” was my casual reply. “See the eyes, nose, and mouth?” My Dad looked, nodded, cracked a smile, and walked away—probably thinking about the strangeness of his firstborn.

I’ll be honest; I still do this today, but not as excessively compared to my childhood. You might think I’m crazy and suffering from pareidolia: seeing faces in unusual places or something significant in the ordinary. But, I’m just like my Father (and I’m not talking about the earthly one).

…even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were (Romans 4:17, KJV).

I might see a face in the toasted side of a grilled cheese sandwich, but that’s as far as I go. However, God not only sees the face in my grilled cheese sandwich, but He takes it to a whole different level. (Just so we’re clear, God’s not really looking at my sandwich…)

My imagination stops in the natural. I just see a face in the mass of the ordinary. But, God’s vision transcends the natural and moves into the supernatural. And, even then, He takes the ordinary and makes it extraordinary.

When God looks at you and me, He’s not just seeing faces. He sees something greater than what we are or our present circumstance. He’s seeing ministries that haven’t yet been birthed, lives that haven’t yet been changed, and healings that haven’t yet taken place.

When God speaks things into our lives, we look at the natural and don’t see the miracle, ministry, or healing. We’re stuck in the ordinary view and can’t see what it will be. If we’re lucky, we’ll see the “could-be” face. God sees the face and then makes it alive.

We forget God isn’t bound by time. He lives in the past, present, and future all at once. It’s very easy for Him to get into His creative mindset to see the beginning of a work as well as the end. Because we’re made in His image, and are as right-brained as our Father, He’s calling us to see and believe in the face that hasn’t yet been formulated in our life just yet. He’s asking us to trust that the blurry, not-quite defined promise, will eventually come into focus as a full-blown miracle.

Can we exercise a little bit of faith and creativity in our walk with God? Can we allow God to manifest the extraordinary in the ordinary? Can we start seeing “faces” in unusual places? I challenge you to get lost in the pareidolia of God. You’ll be surprised at what He’ll allow you to see and experience in Him.