I've learned so much from George. He has been my friend for over thirty years. George is blind. The things that George struggles with in his overt blindness have taught me much about the covert blindness of the heart that every sinner struggles with in some way.
First, I've learned that there is no more important set of eyes than the eyes of my heart. Yes, George is physically blind, but spiritually he has very good vision. Every day George exercises that mysterious ability that God gives to his children to see the unseen.
Now, to people who have embraced the truth that their entire hope in life is centered in a God of grace and glory, who is a spirit, the exercise of this gift of spiritual sight is essential. I've learned from George that your life is always shaped by what your eyes see. If this is true of the physical eyes, how much more is it true of the eyes of the heart?
Second, I've learned how important it is to humbly accept your blindness. Scripture is quite clear about the blinding power of sin. Sin is deceitful, and guess who it deceives first? I have no problem whatsoever seeing the sin of my wife, children, and friends, but I can be quite surprised when mine is pointed out.
Spiritual blindness not only blinds me to the reality of my sin, but it also blinds me to the glory of God that is everywhere around me. God has created his world to be a constant sight-and-sound display of his power, glory, faithfulness, and love. Yet the eyes of my heart can be so clouded, so like George I need to accept that I have a significant sight problem that has the power to radically alter the way I live my life.
Third, I've learned that you always deal with your blindness in a community with others. When George got serious about dealing with his handicap, he welcomed people into his life who had the concern, knowledge and skills to help him.
The fact of the matter is this: personal spiritual insight is the product of community. I need people who not only help me see what I couldn't see without them, but who also lovingly help me to admit how blind I actually am. As long as sin remains in me, I will continue to have pockets of spiritual blindness.
Fourth, I've learned to long for 20/20 vision. George has learned to accept his blindness. He has learned to open himself up to a community of help. He has learned how to compensate for his handicap.
But George is not content. He longs for the day when he will be given eyes that see clearly. He looks expectantly for the day when he will no longer be blind. In the same way, we should be tired of being deceived. We should live for the day when the eyes of our heart will no longer be blind and, with 20/20 vision we will be welcomed to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord forever!
- Which of the four lessons from George can you use the most?
- How can you open yourself up for more help from the body of Christ?
- How can you be an instrument of sight for those struggling with blindness?
Paul David Tripp