27 As Jesus departed, two blind men followed him, crying out, “Show us mercy, Son of David.”
28 When he came into the house, the blind men approached him. Jesus said to them, “Do you believe I can do this?”
“Yes, Lord,” they replied.
29 Then Jesus touched their eyes and said, “It will happen for you just as you have believed.” 30 Their eyes were opened. Then Jesus sternly warned them, “Make sure nobody knows about this.” 31 But they went out and spread the word about him throughout that whole region (Matthew 9:27-31, Common English Bible).
I cannot say I have any understanding of what it is like to be blind. I do not. I have never been blind. I pray I never experience blindness.
Yesterday I went to see my ophthalmologist. It was not an annual visit. I am experiencing a condition in my right eye called “vitreous detachment.” It sounds really impressive but it is actually part of the aging process. I experienced the same condition in my left eye about three years ago.
When I had the condition in my left eye, it tore the retina and I had to have laser surgery on the eye to stabilize the tear. It is not an experience I look forward to repeating. Though everyone told me it was a nothing surgery, the idea of someone carving on my eye with a laser was unsettling. Also, it took about five days before my vision in that eye returned to normal. I couldn’t see with my left eye at all when I left after the surgery.
Now, because of what happened with my left eye, I am considered a high risk for retinal tears in my right eye. This was my third trip for examinations on that eye during the month of October.
Still, while this experience might have given me some small amount of understanding, I still know little of what the blind experience. It was just enough to teach me I don’t want to experience total blindness. It also makes me grateful for my sight.
Today’s lesson is one of many stories in the Bible about the blind getting their sight back. Two men beg Jesus to heal them. He does so and gives them a warning not to tell anyone what they experienced. In spite of the instructions, they immediately went out and did the very thing Jesus told them not to do. It is pretty obvious they didn’t follow instructions very well.
If I am honest with myself, I don’t think I would. And, I am going to go out on a bit of a limb here. I doubt you would do so well either. They went out and celebrated their newfound vision.
Further, people who knew them and knew they were blind would ask them how they got their sight back. They were so happy there is no way they were going to lie.
Blindness is not the end of the world. Many blind people have gone on to do great things for themselves and for the world. Still, I cannot imagine how difficult such a life would be. It makes me grateful for my sight and for those who can help me maintain it.
I want to give you the same challenge I am giving my congregation. Through the month of November keep a journal. You can do it electronically if you would like. If you would rather paper, you can use a spiral notebook or a composition book. That is my personal favorite for paper writing. You can also use something more expensive if you would like. The point is, write down (or type, I am doing this on my blog). Then find someone to tell about that thing for which you are grateful today. The journal will give you an easy way during difficult times to go back and see and know once again about God’s mighty presence. Sharing with someone else helps us tell our story. It helps others to do the same.
Sight is what I am grateful today. What about you. What are you grateful for today? Write it down. Share it with others.
Have a blessed day in the Lord.
With Joy and Thankfulness,
Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved