A few days ago, I made my annual pilgrimage to my optometrist for my eye exam. And like any other visit to my eye doctor, I experienced the initial small talk, general health questions, and eventual invitation to “the chair”. Once seated, I felt my anxiety rise as my chin was placed on the chin pad and the eye apparatus brought up to my face, squeezing my nose in the process.
Next came the dreaded “can you read the bottom line?” question. “No problem”, I thought as I started down the line…”Hhhhh”, “Pppp”, “Sssss”, “Kkkkkkk”, and finally the last character. “Uh, ‘c’…no, no, ‘e’…oh, man!….’o’?” The response of “good” did nothing to soothe my perfectionist tendencies. At last came the questions that just torments the indecisive…”is it better with 3 or 4?”, “better with 1 or 2?”, “is it clearer at 4…or 5?”
And, as if withholding the best for last, out came the eye drops that would just change my life for the next several hours—I was about to get dilated! Sitting there in the chair, waiting for the magic to happen and dabbing the amber tears from my eyes, I was wondering just how I was going to work from home the remainder of the day. After subjecting both eyes to immense, blazing, and irritating light, it was over; a little too anticlimactic. But here came the “But wait, there’s more” moment when they offered me the Cataract 100 sunglasses; you know the kind. They are the disposable sunglasses that instantly make people think you’re in need of a seeing-eye dog. Since it was a cloudy day, I enthusiastically declined and chose to squint my way home.
Once back at my home workspace, the kitchen bar, I sat in front of the IBM T510 laptop and stared, trying to focus. I could read e-mails and do my work but not without difficulties. At one point and time, between the dilation and bifocals, my head was bobbing up and down with rhythmic precision and I must have appeared as if an Albatross was in a mating ritual.
Sometimes in life, we inadvertently have our spiritual eyes dilated due to unconfessed sin in our lives. Our spiritual lives become out of focus and a great sensitivity to God’s light begins to occur. And instead of enjoying that beautiful light through God’s word, music or other spiritually motivated sources, our sense of guilt and shame provokes a painful response, many times driving us on to seek shelter in the shadows of our own regrets. It is at those times when we need to seek out God’s “Foster Grants” so to speak of grace and forgiveness. For only when we seek sincere forgiveness to God, and at times ourselves and/or others, can our spiritual eyes once again be completely restored so we can see fully what God’s path is for us to follow.
“The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!” Matthew 6:22-23