The optometrist looked at me, ‘You have one short-sighted eye and the other is long-sighted’. He wrote on my card and added, ‘That’s given you about four extra years without glasses’. Apparently the combination isn’t unusual; handy, in fact!
This conversation took place more than twenty-five years ago. I was thankful that I hadn’t needed his assistance earlier.
Since then I’ve wondered about these two extremes of sight: short and long. My father used to hold his thick black Bible ‘at arm’s length’ – long-sighted. And when a tiny article fell to the floor, my niece was always called upon to find it – short-sighted.
Applying this to life, I can see (!!) how my tendency to be fussy about details can be an advantage and a nuisance. I often notice barely perceptible imperfections in things and events and I’m driven to correct them. I also try to work out if the distant future is going to be good or bad, then I endeavour to arrange things so I’m ready to face it. I see all the small aspects and that’s a worry. I’ve been told that I’m wrong…in both ways! Surely I’m not the only one!
In this particular phase of our lives, when my husband and I are deciding whether we’ll have a walk-in shower in our new home or one with a door, or when we’re thinking about the exact placement of the clothesline in the back lawn, I’ve noticed myself becoming a little uptight about it all.
I love making lists. They help me to remember things and Maurie has lately discovered the benefits of them. We were comparing his and hers and he thought mine was too detailed! I told him I couldn’t understand his writing anyway! Did it matter which list was best? The exercise was suppose to be about choosing tapware and we’d ended up making the list the primary matter!
Can we use our ‘natural’ short/long-sightedness as an excuse for our behaviour? Should we ask God to help us to be more versatile, especially in the way we interact with other people?
All this hard thinking has made me wonder about God’s view of things. Is our Lord long- or short-sighted? He’s not remote because he sees a tiny sparrow fall. He knows the future and though it might seem disastrous to us, he’s not fazed. What do you think?
The Grand Picture
bring me to the place
where you see, Lord
help me to follow your gaze
show me your stitching
in my humble life
give me a taste
of the ways
you shadow my world
in patterns of grey
yet make every accent so bright
* * *
whenever I’m tempted
to find errors and faults
oh to be sighted like you
seeing notes in your melodies
winging away on the wind
two eyes working together
Lyn Thiele – February 2016