Vision, Sight, Seeing…
My favorite is Sight – I would rather keep my sight and let go of tasting, smelling, hearing, touching…
My ability to see is something I do not want to take for granted.
I have been a reader all my life (that I can remember) and with sight I can go on researching the wonders of the world through the written word! In fact, I would much rather read someone’s podcast instead of watching their video or listening to their audio. For me, reading is more important than watching… At least for this purpose!
But then, I am a watcher of all my surroundings; I can hardly wait for the next turn in the road and the surprises it will bring – in fact, I hate to sleep when we are on a driving trip – I might miss something! I enjoy watching people – how they act and react. And who doesn’t enjoy watching children as they begin to experience the world around them!
Thank God for the ability to see…I would have to change how I enjoy life if I lost my sight.
Did you know that each of us is blessed with a dominant eye. This is the eye that looks more directly at an object. The non-dominant eye is the one that sees at the same object at a slight angle. This small difference helps to provide depth perception and is important in order to focus from distant objects to near objects. Medical folks call this Ocular dominance, and this describes the tendency to “…prefer visual input from one eye to the other.” One may think it’s as unique as being right handed or left handed, but there is no correlation to being dominant with one hand and the same side eye. Approximately two-thirds of the population is right-eye dominant.
Determining the dominant eye is actually very simple. Simply look at an object about 15-20 feet or so from you, raise your hands in front of your face with your palms facing away from you. Create an opening between the two hands by crossing your thumbs and fore-fingers. Look at the object with both eyes open, and then close one eye and note what you can see, then close the other eye and note the differences.
I first learned about this when taking archery lessons. Though right handed, I struggled with hitting the target, much less the bulls eye. My arrows were always going awry. When the instructor tested for eye dominance, we learned that my left eye was seeing more straightly than my right eye. To use this to my advantage I changed from shooting right handed, to left handed. Now, that was a trick!
Knowing which eye is dominant helps us in many facets of life. The way we angle our bodies toward something that is seen clearer by one eye over the other, or the way we always seem to comprehend easier when something is on the side of our bodies which has the dominant eye..
Our eyes and the sense of seeing are very important to us! While our eyes send signals to our brain, it is our brain that makes decisions based upon the results of our vision. One study even says we can see the light of a candle from 10 football fields away!
Although a picture is worth a thousand words, there was the story about the beauty of a face that launched a thousand ships.
We oft remember what we see more than what we hear. An adage of old: “Teach me I forget, Show me I’ll remember, Involve me and I’ll comprehend.” I will remember better when I see, than simply with the telling.
Scripture seems to be more focused on the sense of sight more than the sense of hearing. Equal in number, God has given us two eyes and two ears. Yet the translation of images through the ocular nerve into something retained in our brain for later recall is an amazing process.
Samuel T Coleridge said, “My eyes make pictures when they are shut.” The concept of seeing something in our mind is missing when someone is blind. To a woman who never had sight, Helen Keller said, “Of all the senses, sight must be the most delightful.”
Jesus deals with a man who was born blind and healed him. The man was questioned about the miracle. His reply?
He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see. John 9:25
Like Helen Keller, this man might have never had the opportunity to see, even with modern technology. When brought before Jesus as a challenge, Jesus simply anointed his eyes with clay and spittle and instructed the man to go and wash his eyes. Upon doing so, the man miraculously gained his sight. The religious authorities were quick to seize on this, looking for a reason to accuse Jesus. When they queried the once blind man, part of his statement has stayed with me for the past little while, “…one thing I know, whereas I was blind, now I see…” This man was not only going to be thankful for that which he could see right now, today, but imagine how he will be thanking God later on in life when he can experience wonders that were once closed to him.
What must it be like to come from a place of total blindness, and now be able to see everything, all the time.
Take this concept of seeing and use it for the “long view.” We can be made happy by things which bring instant gratification. I heard a man make a statement about why we love digital cameras so much, we can instantly see the results – no waiting for the film to be completely used, no waiting for the processing of the film, – show it to me right now. This simple change in technology means the photographer can always get another shot to make it right, or better!
I believe Vision needs to be something that gives us not only short term benefits, but a gaze of where we are headed on the path we are walking so as to determine the end result.
The children of Israel were willing to give up their eyesight in their right eye in order to have a king (1 Sam 11:1-11). How could you voluntarily give up your depth perception just to have a king. Not even a Godly king, but one whose name means “snake”. He was not a Godly man, he was a man of the world. They were willing to follow anybody just to have a king in their life. Perhaps the problem was not only in their desire, but they had already lost the Vision of what God had intended them to have – a chosen people, a royal priesthood, and a holy nation!
This world wants us to give up our eyes, our vision, just so we can all get along. They want to enforce their own set of rules and values upon us and have us accept their way of looking at things.
Don’t give up your spiritual vision just to fit in with someone else that doesn’t believe what I believe
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
2 Corinthians 6:14-18
Scripture is full of those who gave up their Spiritual Vision to fellowship with Darkness.
- In order to eat lunch with a snake, Eve partook of the fruit that was designed to not be taken. And she lost her home and was expelled from the garden…she was kicked out of a perfect environment…she lost her purity…her innocence…
- Samson was willing to loose his eyes over a beautiful lady…. Here was a Judge of Israel, a man of strength who could rip apart a lion with his hands, destroy thousands in battle – but he had no depth perception and could not keep his eyes in focus! In the end…he lost his ability to see…and we find him a servant to the enemies of God…grinding corn in a dungeon with both of his eyes plucked out.
- David lost his vision several times by the lust and pride within his own life and walked off down roads that led to darkness.
- Peter loses his Vision of the Messiah and flees into the darkness after cursing those who thought he was a follower of Christ.
- Paul describes this world blinded by the god of this world in 2 Corinthians 4:3-4, where the Gospel of the Good News is hid.
Do not be a slave to a vision that is not Godly! Matt 18:9 “And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire.” If you find yourself off the pathway of God, do whatever it takes to get back on the strait and narrow. Mark Twain said, “You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” Keep our focus in tune with the direction of God is where we need to work the hardest.
Helen Keller was asked, “what would be worst than being born blind, she said being born without a vision”.
Prov 29:18 Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.