“Give me your eyes for just one second, give me your eyes so I can see everything that I keep missing. Give me your love for humanity. Give me your eyes for the broken hearted, the ones that are far beyond my reach. Give me your eyes for the ones forgotten, give me your eyes so I can see.” – “Give me Your Eyes” by Brandon Heath
In Death Note, the shinigami, gods of death, can grant users of the death note “the eyes” which enables them to see everyone’s name and date of death.
Why would you want to know this?
Owners of a Death Note can kill anyone who’s name they write in the Death Note, and face they can visualize. The only downside to the shinigami eyes are that you pay for them with half of your remaining life span. So it’s far from a blessing. One might say the shinigami eyes are a curse of a mad man. (Light Yagami cough cough)
Light Yagami uses the Death Note in order to make a better world where there is no evil. This is insane because I’m sure everyone in this world has a different definition for what evil is. Light wants to become the god of that new world ruling it by punishing criminals for their evil deeds. The funny thing is, that Light would then become the most evil man in his world if he were to do away with all murderers. He would be the only murderer left. That’s some pretty twisted logic, sacrificing your humanity in order to “better” humanity, but that’s why the anime is so interesting.
Death Note is a supernatural thriller. The shinigami eyes and the death note are a supernatural power given very rarely to humans. One would be very lucky to receive the death note, and fortunate as well as completely insane to make the eye deal. Sometimes people think Christians are just as insane with our strange, twisted, and even evil with out “Jesus loves you” logic. Our faith is just an excuse to be homophobic, or sexist, or menace to society. We’re just as bad as Light Yagami who wants to force everyone to follow the way he thinks the world should be.
This is not the case. Christians do not wish to force you to do or believe anything. God gave each person the free will to do whatever they want. You are completely free to do all the evil you want, but be ready to pay the price of your actions at the end of your life. Christians aren’t on the earth to be police like Light Yagami thinks his purpose is. Still, we have a very special role on this earth and that is to love others. And in order to love someone, you have to try and understand their pain.
In a way, when we become Christians we get “special eyes.”
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” Romans 12:2
When we accept Jesus as the only one who can save us from the ticket we have to pay at the ends of our lives, we gain not only new life, but new eyes. We see the world differently. We think differently. Our hearts beat differently. It’s like we’ve made a contract with the shinigami, but instead of seeing people’s name floating above their heads, we see the reality of what sin does to the world and the pain it causes. We care about people in a way we didn’t before.
This is pretty much the exact opposite of the shinigami eyes. When we have God giving us new eyes, changing the way we think, we wish to raise people up, encourage them, to be lights to the world. The shinigami eyes are a special power that enables the user to commit great evil and in Light’s case, that is in order to make the world better. Hmm, how does one make a better world by becoming a serial killer? Why don’t we just use Jesus’ eyes, not kill people, but instead give them new life, pull them out of their evil and into the light? (No, not that Light)
Light Yagami thinks himself the ultimate judge, and while he is not, there is an ultimate judge who will one day show us how dark our hearts really are and give us the penalty for it. With the eyes and hearts of Jesus, we have the tools to help save people from this reality.
“Your eye is a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is good, your whole body is filled with light. But when your eye is bad, your whole body is filled with darkness. And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!” Mathew 6:22
Obviously, Light has some pretty bad eyes. He doesn’t have the shinigami eyes, but Misa does/did/does again. (It’s complicated) Still, both are living in darkness they created by living in the lie that you can create a better world through evil means. This verse is perfect to describe Misa: “And if the light (Yagami) you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!” Surprise Misa!
When I was in Japan, I felt like Light in a way. Except completely different. Something God asked me to do when I was traveling in Japan, just walking down the streets, was to pray for people. And God told me what people I passed by needed prayer for. Like the shinigami eyes, God gave me insight into something normal people don’t know. It was almost like a super power, but I was completely humbled that God was working through me in that way. Unlike Light, I wasn’t trying to use power to conquer the world, but I know that God can work through me to break through hurting hearts.
My trip to Japan wasn’t as, talkative as other mission trips may be. I didn’t speak the language except for ordering food and buying things at the combini. I couldn’t share the words on my mind, but I could look at someone and just feel God’s love for them. Indeed, I began to understand how much God loved each and every person I walked passed, but I also started to see how much death there was in the world. Japan is less then 1% Christian. Now while I can’t see what’s in a person’s heart, I can guess that they probably don’t have the same worldview as I do. They probably don’t know how much Jesus loves them. I could see so much death all around me. So many hurting broken people looking for the love that God wants to give them. I was put on the streets of Tokyo in order to use my “shinigami eyes” to see the need the Japanese people have for deep love from our Lord. They need a purpose, belonging, and a sense of love. Everyone needs it, but God has specifically given me a bleeding heart for the Japanese.
“The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. Psalm 19:8
Christians too often take their “shinigami eyes” for granted. God has given each and every one of his children as special talent when they come to know him. Christians aren’t using their talents or spiritual gifts for God like they could be. And sometimes, we forget about our special eyes and we stop using them all together. That’s why we need to keep asking God, “give me your eyes so I can see the reality of this world. I want to see how people are hurting so I can help them. I want to see the death around them that makes them suffer so.”
If you’re reading this I challenge you to find your shinigami eyes. Ask God how he wants you to use them. He’ll give you an answer, and then you can be such a blessing to someone around you who is hurting. You might never even get to know how much impact you’ll have on someone when you use your shinigami eyes.
Here’s a song about the actual eyes that come from God.