I'll never forget the day I went "blind."
It started like any other ordinary day... rolling over when the alarm went off, listening to Mike open the children's doors and turn off the fan we use for white noise. Accepting morning hugs but staying snuggled under the covers until the bathroom is clear. Reluctantly pushing back the warm cocoon and swinging my feet to the floor, eyes still shut against the light. Stumbling my way to the humid bathroom to find my glasses. Putting them on and opening my eyes to look in the mirror so I can drag a comb through whatever bizarre sculpture bed-head has made of my hair.
Only I can't see.
Like, at all.
Everything is a huge gray and white blur. Not just a blur but a painful one.The world spins.
I snap my eyes shut, squeeze them. Open then again. What in the world is wrong?
I grip the edge of the sink to stave off dizziness. I take my glasses off, clean them quickly on my pajama top, and slide them back into place.
Oh my goodness. Something is really wrong. I can't see ANYTHING. It's just fuzzy colors.
How have my eyes changed so much, overnight? Is it high blood pressure? Some kind of eye infection? What else causes blindness.? A tumor?I knew it. I have a tumor. I'm going blind! How on earth am I going to learn Braille? Wait, does anyone still learn Braille? I bet there's an app for that. Gah!! I can NOT go blind!
I meet my own panicky eyes in the steamy mirror.
Strangely, I can see my eyes quite clearly. I can see the crease-mark on my face from the pillow, really well. And I can see that I do, indeed, need to comb my Mohawk before anyone else sees it.
Can you guess what happened?
"Someone" forgot to take out her contacts the night before. And when you put two visual aids designed to bring your vision up to 20/20 on AT THE SAME TIME, your vision, turns out, will be quite a lot NOT 20/20. A few saline drops later, glasses placed back on the shelf, and sight as good as any I'm going to get on Planet Earth is restored.
You're snickering at me. I can hear you over there. Yes, you. But anyone who has ever looked for their reading specs while wearing them knows exactly what I'm talking about. All the blurry things brought into focus with one realization, one small, yet vital, piece of information. Hello? They're on your face.
Sometimes my spiritual eyesight goes a bit blurry, too. I remove one tiny yet oh-so-important detail from the equation (God is the Blessed Controller of all things) and wind up with a totally different answer (I have to take care of all this stuff --all by myself--yesterday).
My son Dan likes things to be orderly (the state of his room notwithstanding). Somehow we were discussing how inconvenient a seven-day week is when you're trying to work something around an every-other-day time schedule. A seven-day week just refuses to conform to that without an annoying leftover day.
Except it's not just an annoying leftover. Our world and its rhythms and seasons are a gift from the Creator, who chose to work for six days and then take a break. Why would He do that? It's not like Almighty God needed a break! It's not like forming planets from nothing and thinking up human beings from teeth to toenails was hard on Him. No, He did it on purpose. He was forming a pattern for us to follow. "For He knows our frame; He remembereth that we are dust." Psalm 103:14
And as always, we when step outside the design, thinking we know best, there are consequences in every area of our lives. Not just physical consequences, but emotional and mental consequences to a life lived on a treadmill that never, ever stops. God knows that. When You're omniscient, there are very few surprises, I understand.
One of the blurry things that my illness has brought into focus is the Sabbath. Sunday has not been a "day of rest" for me for my entire life. It's been a day of service from sun-up to sundown, with business responsibilities looming for Monday and leftover duties from Saturday bleeding over to claim the evening hours and wander my thoughts away from the sermon.
It's only weakness that has brought home to me the priceless perfection and tender foresight of the Creator's plan. A day OFF the treadmill. A day not meant to "catch up" but to stop in our endless catching up.
It's not coincidence that I never slowed down enough to contemplate the meaning of Sabbath before. This is a knowledge that can only come of having been given, through grace, a painful and humbling experience which opens my eyes to a truth I could not understand without being exactly where I am at this moment. It is another gift that can only be poured into a broken vessel.
A blurry thing clears and comes into focus. Hello? It's been there all along.
The missing vital piece of information which changes everything?
His way is best.
Creator God, Almighty One, our hearts bow in humility before the depth and breadth of Your plan. There are no leftovers, no miscalculations, no errors in the glorious, continuous unfolding of Your will before our dazzled eyes. Thank You for bringing me to a place and time where I can absorb the simple truth that You loved me enough to pause in Your incredible Creation saga, and just be still, creating the Sabbath as a pattern for all time. Help me honor that day of rest with all my heart and soul and mind. All Creation sings Your praise and I join the mighty chorus with hands upraised and a heart overflowing with gratitude. Amen.