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I Never Knew I Was Blind ... Until I Could See!
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Some people never wonder
Why they stumble throughout life
And take so many wrong turns
That just lead to pain and strife.
At most they blame it all upon
Their "rotten luck" or "fate".
Life dealt a hand of garbage –
What they wanted was a "straight"!
But then, at last, they see the truth
And find, to their surprise,
The right way is much clearer
If they open up their eyes!
~ Debbie Porter ~
* * *
I still remember the day when my sister, Diane, discovered that she was short-sighted. She was 19 at the time and had been so excited about finally taking the big step to get her permit to be able to learn to drive.
The rules have changed quite a lot since then with all applicants now having to pass a road knowledge test before they can ever get behind a steering wheel. However, at that time the only requirement was that an eye examination be passed.
Diane never gave it a second thought as she headed off to the local Roads and Traffic Authority that morning.
Neither did we; at least not until an hour later when she tearfully informed us that she’d failed the test and would have to get glasses.
Glasses! The thought was more than my 15 year old mind could cope with. How could it be so?
Sure, older people had to wear them, as well as the occasional unfortunate girl or boy at school. But not my big sister! I mean, come on! Wasn’t it enough that she’d had to wear braces on her teeth in those terribly painful, self-conscious, early teenage years?
Within days, Diane’s first pair of glasses came into existence and to be honest they didn’t look bad on her. Not only that, but Di was now able to get her learner’s permit and safely step into the whole new world of driving.
In the end I decided that these spectacles were fine for my sister, but thankfully I wouldn’t have to worry about such things for myself. After all, I had absolutely no desire to ever drive a car.
Not that I would need glasses anyway, of course!
Still, if I wasn’t in any hurry to start driving then the issue should never even need to arise.
The first shock hit me when Diane left her new glasses on the brick wall surrounding our back patio. In a moment of adolescent mischief, I picked them up and looked through the lenses.
Instantly everything became crystal clear!
Before anyone could see and comment on what I’d just done, I whipped the incriminating glasses from my face and tossed them back onto the top of the wall.
If there was a problem with my sight, I didn’t want to know about it!
I managed to slip unobtrusively back into my fuzzy world of delusion for another two years. Then, I met my Waterloo!
It wasn’t because I wanted to learn to drive (in fact, I managed to avoid that for another ten years). It was, unfortunately, because my first job was as a Secretary in the Public Service and, as was the normal procedure for all Government employees, I was required to undergo a physical.
Everything was perfect, until the Doctor turned my attention toward the itty-bitty eye chart that was set at least half a mile away from where I was standing. When he asked me to read the fourth line, I was so stunned that I never even thought to try and fake it. Instead I showed my complete disbelief by squawking, “You MUST be JOKING!”
“I think you’d better see an Optometrist,” he advised, without any trace of humor.
A few weeks later I was able to see an Eye Specialist and received what is probably a fairly common verdict. I was short-sighted – just like my sister.
By the time my Mother took me to collect my new glasses, I’d pretty much resigned myself to the fact that, even if I didn’t wear them all the time, spectacles were always going to be a part of my life. Not only that, but I’d actually started to even feel a little excited about what this may do for my viewing pleasure.
I will never forget the moment the Optometrist set the glasses carefully on my face and told me to read the sign on the building across the street.
Every single letter was perfectly clear and in razor sharp focus. It was truly amazing!
The trip home that day was eye-opening, to say the least!
I discovered that trees actually had individual, quite distinct, non-blurry leaves.
I also noticed that the spray from a little waterfall that we passed could be seen as individual droplets dancing in the sunlight.
Oh and the signs along the way! Each one of them stood out with such brilliant detail and clarity that I couldn’t help but read every single word.
It was on that short drive home that the revelation hit. I had never realised that my eyesight was poor, until I was actually given the opportunity to see!
I also realised that, for how ever many years it had been like this, I’d been compensating. Short-sighted people become very good at guessing what signs say by gauging the size and length. It is, however, an ability that is far from fool-proof.
While I was still in my fuzzy little out-of-focus world, I had absolutely no concept of what I was missing. Although my eyesight had once been very good, the deterioration was so gradual that I never noticed the change of quality. I simply thought that everyone saw things the same way.
Astoundingly, it only took one second in time for my view of the world to be changed forever. It was the instant that the Optometrist set the glasses in place. Right there and then, a lifetime of distorted vision came to an end and in its place was a new life of clarity and focus!
I was 17 when my physical sight was corrected.
My spiritual sight, however, remained extremely unfocussed for several more years. To be honest, when it came to my spiritual vision, I wasn’t just a little short-sighted. I was completely blind!
Although my new glasses had given me a whole new view of the world around me, the reality was that my world-view hadn’t changed at all.
I didn’t know it then, but my life at that time was a perfect illustration of the Apostle Paul’s words to the church in Corinth:
"The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God."
~ 2 Corinthians 4:4 NIV ~
Every now and then someone or something would give me a little glimpse of what was missing in my life, but fear always caused me to step back into my cosy, clumsy world of denial.
That little world survived until the day I fell in love with Jesus. In that instant, I stepped out of the darkness of my spiritual blindness and into the light of revelation.
Right at that very moment, the eyes of my heart were opened to the truth. Then, in the light of God’s grace, my whole life came clearly into focus and at long last I was truly able to see.
* * *
"I [Jesus] have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness."
~ John 12:46 NIV ~
* * *
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Reader Count & Comments
25 Sep 2015
I enjoyed reading this. Of course, where physical sight is concerned we are short-sighted and that can be corrected with glasses.
But where spiritual sight is concerned, we are blind - till God opens our eyes, and brings us out of darkness into His marvellous light, 1 Pet 2.9.
Thank you for being kind. You were the first to respond positively to my plea as a newbie. I wish all moderators were like you. Blessings.
30 Mar 2007
Such insight! (Heavy on the "sight".) My wonder with glasses came when my 3rd grade son had to have glasses and I felt so bad!
I had never even thought of it having perfect vision myself (up to that point). Then when I heard him say they were the first thing he reached for each morning, I felt like I'd neglected him.
Now I wear them too. The doctor said you won't wear glasses until you need them...Is there a lesson in that?
18 Sep 2006
So true and relevant to daily living.
Be a blessing continually
23 Dec 2004
This piece is incredibly powerful! I learned so much from this. Thank you so much for sharing this. I have been blessed. God bless you Deb! :)
Wendy M. Reynolds
03 Jun 2004
Very nice! Wendy
01 Jun 2004
very nice debbie. i like the poem too.
30 May 2004
Hi Debbie, I just wanted to tell you what a wonderful, enjoyable article to read. In fact everything I have read of yours is excellent.
29 May 2004
I absolutely loved this article! It's content exceeded the expectations of it's catchy title and the author's use of formatting was most artisic.( The poem was an excellent intro)The graceful blending of childhood experience
with spiritual growth and truth is told in an easy narrative whoven by an enchanted loom and authenticated poignantly by scripture. Keep writing!
23 Oct 2003
Thanks so much! Keep Jesus on your mind. :)
23 Oct 2003
Thanks very much for letting God use your hands to deliver an anointed message. :)
Dennis Van Scoy
28 Aug 2003
Debbie, This was a wonderful presentation...
you have a "gentle" way
of making a point that is
delightful, insightful and inspiring, this was
so great.....Thank you
19 Aug 2003
You are amazing not just because of this powerful piece but because you challenge me in a way that I am tempted (as a new comer) to think this site belongs to you. Every article that I have tried to read from members here including mine have been read by you and comments made by you. I feel challenged to have hunger like that to read all. Keep it up and God bless.
10 Aug 2003
Debbie, this was great! In my psychology classes we called it "tunnel vision" where you see only what you want to see and then fill in the blank spaces. Your blending of the physical and spiritual in a "real life" scenario was outstanding. Love, Ray.
05 Aug 2003
I was 15 when I had to get classes (my grades dropped, we had assigned seats and mine was in the back!) I was like you I could not believe the way things really looked. It was several years later before the blindness in my spiritual eyes lifted and I could truly see some of what God saw! Thanks for reminding me of the emotions of both blindnesses being restored!
01 Aug 2003
We can talk, and witness, and preach, and do all the right things -and we need to. However it is only when the Holy Spirit causes blinded eyes to see that the miracle of new birth happens. A very ood switch from physical to spiritual sight. Very well done. Davy
31 Jul 2003
hello Debbie! I wonder why so many millions hesitate to put on those 'glasses'. I suppose (like me) they're afaid they may see thier own true reflection. We must, by His Spirit, assure them of the beautiful face of grace! Your writing is a delightful example - thank you! luv, donnalynn
31 Jul 2003
Debbie~Just discovered this gem, as it was written while I was lazing it up on vacation. I so enjoy your style of writing. This article reminds me of the story where Jesus restores sight to the blind man, in order for the glory of God to be revealed. Thanks for doing the same with your work for the Kingdom! I'd love to read more.
God bless you~Mary
31 Jul 2003
Debbie, I think everyone feels alittle blind at times. Isn't wonderful when Jesus shows up in a big way or at least it seems that way. Your writing was wonderful. Like to read more.
30 Jul 2003
Why is the world so afraid of those 'glasses'? I suppose, like me, they're fearful of seeing thier own reflection. oh, if we can only convince them of the splendor of the 'face' of grace! Just a peek...
Thanks for sharing. luv, donnalynn
22 Jul 2003
Man...that was good, you developed such a strong parallel between the physical and the spiritual "seeing" thing. Thanks for
sharing! - Jay Cookingham
21 Jul 2003
Debbie - this is absolutely wonderful -- and such a GREAT comparison. It does not only apply to new believers but to those of us who have been followers for a long time -- we always need a new and fresh look -- having worn specs for years -- I seem always to need a new prescription.
21 Jul 2003
Loved your article, it was so poignant in the most delicate way. What is really sad is when we (speaking for myself), had backslidden years ago, voluntarily removing and replacing those priceless new glasses for our old "frame's" of mind. Thank God that He then corrects His own to bring us back to the fold! Thank you for sharing. In Him, Gary
21 Jul 2003
Um...I'm near-sighted too! I really liked this one Deb. It really makes it easy to understand when you compare your spiritual happenings to the small things that happen in your life. Not only does it show us a little more about who you are, it also teaches us a lesson and makes us think. Thanks for sharing Deb. Whitney
20 Jul 2003
What a great way to bring into "focus" how our spiritual walk is before we know Christ. I like it! Being near-sighted as well, I can totally relate! Thank you for sharing!
20 Jul 2003
Hi Deb, My husband stood behind me reading this and said, "That's EXACTLY how it was for me!" Maybe part of our task of witnessing of Christ is allowing others to see spiritually through OUR glasses for a few moments so that they SEE what they are missing! AMEN! God bless you! Donna
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