Blindness Has To Be Difficult
A couple of weeks ago, Anita and I, and the extended gang were on an outing. We had gone to Magic Springs in Hot Springs, Arkansas. I think we all went for Cole and Landon, but some of the bigger folks seemed to like some of it too. It was hot… I mean really hot. Every once in a while I would pinch myself to see if I was dreaming or if I really went there of my own accord. I was just having one of those “Papa” moments where you would agree to anything and then sweat yourself to death while the kids were having a good time. Amusement parks are fascinating, even if you do not like riding the rides and eating eight dollar hamburgers. I do like the colors and all the mechanical things that make the attractions work. While the kids ride the rides, I stand there taking pictures and studying what makes the thing work. I know that I’m obsessed. I’ve just always been curious about stuff like that. Hey, I took my mother’s washing machine apart when I was a kid just to see how it worked… what do you expect?
I love all the smells too. Man, that place is cholesterol city. Corn dogs, cotton candy, candy apples, funnel cakes, snow cones and a hundred other things giving off their smells. You pass a booth and smell one thing and then when you are away a bit it seems like all the smells flow together. I love the smells.
Especially as a child, there are so many things to see and do. I love to watch the little ones. They bolt back and forth, running from one thing to another. The colors, the sounds and the movements are mesmerizing.
As we were moving along through the park, I saw a teenage girl holding another little girl by the arm. I would guess that the smaller girl was around ten or so. I thought it a little strange the way they were going arm and arm. The lay of the land was very hilly. After all, you are in Hot Springs, Arkansas. I don’t know that there is a piece of flat ground there that some bulldozer didn’t push around to make it so. You had to walk carefully or you would be in a nose dive and rolling down a hill before you knew it.
Anyway, I watched these two. It was something about the way the one was holding the other that captured my attention. I followed a bit and observed. I noticed how the younger girl kept her head straight forward instead of moving it from side to side like you would expect. I began to suspect that she was blind. After a little bit, when they turned in a direction more toward me, I then knew for a fact that it was so. This little girl could not see a thing. She was stone blind. The colors and the motions that were so fascinating to me were almost meaningless to her. She could not see the children skipping and tugging at their parents hands in excitement. She could not see the faces of the people when they rode the rides and determine fear and fright from thrill and excitement. She could hear the sounds, but she could never completely experience what was all around her.
It has to be difficult to be blind. I know that there are literally thousands, perhaps millions who are blind and who get along in life very well. I did not have pity, for I know most blind people do not want that. But I could not help but think what I would be missing right there on that trip if I could not see Cole’s face when he was spinning around on the Cup and Saucer or flying around on the airplanes. What a joy it was to see his little face when he was floating in the water and jumping and splashing. It was a joy to watch Grandmamma watch him. This little girl missed all of that. It was all around her… and she missed it. She gathered everything else with her other senses, but she missed the sights.
I thought a bit and followed them as much as I could without getting separated from the family. I would see them occasionally and quietly observe. Each time I took another look I was being taught a lesson. There is so much about God to which I am blind. I hear the sounds and smell the smells, but they do not mean as much without the sight. This little girl will do just fine in life without her sight, but no matter what, she will always miss something. I can go on hearing sounds, smelling smells of God, but I will always be missing something without the sight.
Jesus came to this earth to save us and that is a fact. He also came to “show us the father.” The Book of John is explicit of that purpose in the first chapter. “No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made him known.” – John 1:18. Jesus was on a mission, not only to save us but to give us sight. He wants us to see His Father. And don’t forget this. The Father wants to be seen.
God knows that seeing is of great importance. He inspired Paul to write a heavenly desire…”that the eyes of your heart might be enlightened…” Part of my relationship with Him is that I might see Him, the invisible one. Jesus taught the disciples that some have eyes but do not see and that some have ears and do not hear.
Watching this little girl made me wish. I wish I could have loaned her my eyes for a little while just to let her see what was around her. What a joy that would have been. But once I had them back, she would have been in a even greater darkness. And my Father, He wants to open my eyes that I might see Him. He wants me to know exactly what I have around me, not just the smells and the sounds, but the whole package. He wants to open our eyes and allow us to enjoy and experience the fullness of our relationship with Him.
This little girl would have given all she had to see. And me, I have been given it all and sometimes choose to be blind. How many are the millions of us who walk with God and still do not see? Why do we choose such darkness? Perhaps I should pray, like Paul, that the eyes of my heart might be enlightened. If I asked, would He open them for me?