In 2013, British and American researchers performed an experiment in a hospital in Florida. Anyone who came near the intensive care unit of the hospital was observed by a stern, penetrating set of eyes. The pair of eyes that were fastened on the wall near the hand sanitizer dispenser proved to be a successful precautionary measure. Anyone, whether visitor or clinical personnel, who planned to enter the station was required to thoroughly clean their hands. The “observer” on the wall was there to ensure that this happened.

And indeed, the monitoring worked. If the doctors, caregivers and visitors were eyed, they took more care than usual with their hygiene practices. They rubbed their hands thoroughly before entering the station. The number of people that cleansed according to the prescribed protocol rose by 33%. The interesting thing was that just the feeling of being watched was enough for people – at least most of them – to change their behavior.

The result was quite amazing, and was supported through other similar experiments. After the researchers fastened an enormous poster of stern, piercing eyes on the wall of a university campus above some bicycle racks, the number of bike thefts decreased. In another study done by psychologists in Ulm and Bremen, a set of eyes that peered at readers was printed on the menu of the Mensa. Those customers with the menu were more likely to order vegetarian sandwiches rather than fatty burgers. A similar principle was applied to garbage disposal and proved to be successful here as well. Certainly there are many more examples that could be mentioned.

What would happen if we were truly cognizant of the fact that God looks over our shoulder every single second of our life? For that is exactly what God does. In Psalm 1:4 we read “The Lord is in His holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven; His eyes behold, His eyelids test the sons of men.” Would we perhaps deal with situations differently in the upcoming year if we would be mindful of this fact at the start of each and every day?

Could a pair of eyes on the bulletin board of our room be a reminder for us? What if we had a pair of eyes on the dashboard of our car? Or on the monitor of our computer? In the office? On the inside of our closet? Maybe even on the inside flap of your schoolbag? You alone can determine best where it should go. Allow yourself to be led to a better life with God through His testing eyes. He will help you with this. We, the team of the youth page, wish you God’s blessing for the new year.

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