Yesterday was a productive day; we connected with a few donors, got our eyes checked out and got our international drivers licenses. Getting new glasses and getting our license to drive in Kenya reminded me of the first time I went to get my license and then had to get glasses. It was my 16th birthday and dad, who was a police officer, took me in his full uniform to take my drivers license test, I was not allowed to take it because the first thing they did was make me take the eye chart test. You know, the one with the big E at the top. The big E was the only line I could read, as much as I squinted that second line was nothing but a blur. The lady was very patient, possibly because dad was in uniform, and she asked me several times to read the second line.
“Ummm, P” I guessed
“Ummmm D” I guessed again
“Ummmmm B” I said squinting with all my might
“Dear, it’s a number”
So I failed that completely and off we went to the eye doctor, something I most likely should have done 10 years before that. Getting glasses was unbelievable! I honestly had no idea how blind I had been my entire life. I had no idea that you were supposed to be able to make out faces from a distance. When I played baseball I used to watch the parking lot and when I saw someone in our color uniform I would walk from the field to the lot to see who it was because I had to. And speaking of baseball, I used to get so frustrated and not understand why I couldn’t hit. I knew I was as athletically inclined as anyone on the team but I couldn’t see. I actually just started leaning into pitches so I could get on base, I pretty much kept a bruise on my left hip all through middle school.
Having glasses opened up a new world for me, I world where I could see the board in school. A world where I didn’t have to lay right in front of the TV watching a Memphis Tigers Basketball game just so I could tell Elliot Perry from Todd Mundt (and this is even funnier if you know who they are). A world where I didn’t have to wonder what street I was on because I could actually see the signs. It was incredible. Even though I had these giant, ugly, turtle shell glasses I didn’t care because I could see! I can’t even begin to imagine what it must be like to go from being completely blind to having sight. But the man in John 9:25 does. He made the famous quote after being brought in and asked about Jesus:
He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!”
This kind of blindness I understand even better. I know what I’m like when I take my spiritual glasses off. I know how blind I can become to my own sin, and I certainly know what it’s like to live without Christ in the center of my life. Having a hard time seeing the board is nothing compared to having a hard time seeing the Savior. So I leave you with two things, make sure to have your child’s eyes tested at an early age, and make sure you focus on Jesus and can see his wonderful face.
We leave for Africa in 11 days, pray for us as we prepare for our new life in ministry in Nairobi, Kenya.