You’re going to be tempted to think I’m rather slow at picking things up when I tell you this, and while it’s true that sometimes I can be, especially when it comes to board games, this particular time, I promise you I think this was purposeful on the part of the Lord. He wanted to teach me something. He always wants to teach me something.
One morning about a month ago, I woke up, stretched, rubbed my eyes, and grabbed my morning devotional book. I always try to read today’s message before I get out of bed. This particular morning, though, it was sooo very blurry, but only with my right eye. I got out of bed, washed my glasses, got back in bed, put them back on to read, and they were still blurry. I examined them looking for any scratches, but I didn’t see any. (But really, how am I going to see any fine scratches, unless I have a pair of glasses on?)
There are about 10 more pairs of eyeglasses in the top drawer of my dresser because I like to stay stocked up on my readers, and have fun trying to match colors with my outfits. (Hey, why not? They are cheap, and fun, and you only live once!) So I got up again, got another pair of glasses, jumped back into bed, put on my glasses and they were blurry on the right side AGAIN! So I tried a third pair, and yes, you guessed it – a fourth pair.
Finally, I reached for my lubricating eyedrops next to my bed. Last year my ophthalmologist told me to start using them for the dry eyes I was complaining of having first thing in the mornings. Certainly, a couple of drops ought to clear up any blurriness. It helped a little bit, but I began noticing it every morning. A close friend suggested I make an appointment with my ophthalmologist, so I did and, would you believe I have a cataract?
Yes. Yes, of course you would believe I had a cataract. YOU probably knew that I had a cataract way, way back up there in the very first paragraph.
But no…. I needed someone to tell me that perhaps the problem was ME, not the glasses I kept exchanging out. None of my solutions had anything to do with the remote possibility that there just might have been something wrong with ME!
It’s just like friendship, really. Sometimes, it takes a genuine friend to point out to us what we are unable (or just refuse) to see ourselves. Often, it’s something simple like a possible cataract, or matted up hair on the back of our head, or a bit of ranch dressing dribbled on our blouse. Every now and then, though, it’s something big, like sin, and if we’re a genuine enough friend then we take that leap, and we risk the loss of a friendship.
Today, I don’t have matted up hair on the back of my head, but I had breakfast with a friend and yes, I dribbled ranch dressing on my blouse. She’s my friend and we were able to laugh about it, but I know this friend also loves me enough to tell me the hard stuff too. If my hair needs a comb, she’ll tell me. If my walk is a wee bit off, she’s also going to notice, and I know she’s going to help me see it too. She won’t enable me by offering me a cane. She’ll hold my hand and walk alongside me while I gain strength and walk correctly again.
I hope you have a friend like mine, who tells you when to have your eyes examined, when to comb the back of your hair, or when your walk is a little crooked.
I also hope you’re willing to listen.
“Listen to advice and accept discipline, and at the end you will be counted among the wise.” Proverbs 19:20