I had an appointment with the vitriol retinologist today…fancy-shmancy title for an eye doctor who specializes in the back part of the eye. As we left for yet another out-of-town appointment, I found myself grumpy. It was early, I hadn’t slept well for a couple of nights, I had a three-day old headache…I was out of sorts. Hubs prayed for me. I only half-heartedly listened to what he was saying. The pounding rhythm inside my head was louder and I didn’t feel like I could listen to anything else. Lord, just help me today. I can’t hear or see anything right now. I need You…
As we drove out-of-town, I glanced to the left and something caught my eye: an eagle! Truly, a bald eagle perched high in a tree top along the highway. I’ve never seen one before, so it was a new, beautiful sight. Immediately, I remembered:
But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31
That eagle was there to remind me to wait on the Lord…so, I determined that I would wait…in expectation and hope for Him to be glorified today.
We arrived at our appointment on time…and we waited. And waited and waited. When they finally called my name, we were ushered into a room where a nurse checked my vision. The vision in my right eye was excellent. The vision in my left was unchanged…a small sliver of light on the periphery and a pinhole of light towards the top of my field of vision. I was ecstatic! The nurse probably thought I was making a big deal out of nothing, but I was thrilled to be able to see anything at all…even if it was just shadows and light! She explained that she was going to dilate both my eyes. I started to hyper-ventilate…I have a complete phobia about my eyes. She left the room to gather some paperwork and I started to cry. I felt so weak and foolish and afraid. Very, very afraid. Actually, I would describe the fear as gripping.
She came back with our paperwork and showed us to another small waiting area. I was in tears and about to break down. Head bowed and eyes closed, I cried out to the Lord for the second time…Jesus, help me! I can’t do this. I don’t know how to stay here and let this happen. Please, please help me.
As soon as I lifted my head and opened my eyes, the woman sitting across from me started talking with us. We shared our “war stories” about our eyes and I had the chance to share a little bit of what God has been doing in my life recently. Sharing with her, testifying…helped. My fears disappeared while we were talking and sharing.
When it was finally our turn to see the doctor, he came in and examined my eye. Right away, he said that he didn’t understand why my original doctor had attempted to do the surgery. He explained that after examining my eye, my port-wine stain birthmark extends all the way to the back of my eye. The back of my eye has a lot of scar tissue covering it from my birthmark and so I never would have been able to recover any sight, even with a powerful new lens. As for the original lens that was dislodged during my surgery Tuesday and is “floating” at the back of my eye, he didn’t see any immediate need to remove it.
I was a little irritated at the way he was talking about my eye. Obviously, he doesn’t really understand how important this little bit of sight is to me! He just doesn’t “get it.” But as we went on to discuss my birthmark and the eye surgeries I underwent as a child, he explained that is had been wise for us to discontinue attempting to maintain my sight. We would have wasted thousands of dollars and a crazy amount of time trying to hold onto something that couldn’t be held onto.
Everything clicked for me…I remember when I made the decision not to continue trying to maintain the very, very limited sight in my left eye. I didn’t really know God in the “born again” way I do now…but I clearly felt Him urging me to stop. I would go so far as to say that I heard Him audibly say, “No more surgeries, Child. Let it go.” I don’t think my mother was as convinced about my choice–I was only 13 or so– but she let me make it. Today, God clearly reminded me that He has been in total control of my eye–of my life!–all along.
Hubs asked me over lunch if I was disappointed about the prognosis of my eye. I smiled and told him the I am actually so, so encouraged. Friends, I am. From the eagle this morning to the woman in the waiting room to the reminder that I did clearly hear God speak to my heart as a child…this day has been filled with encouragement.
In Exodus 19, God speaks to Moses and says: 3 And Moses went up to God, and the LORD called to him from the mountain, saying, “Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel: 4 ‘You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself. 5 Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine.”
Seeing that eagle this morning was no accident. Friends, God has carried us on eagles’ wings to Himself…we are His people. We are a special treasure to Him!
It was also no accident to speak with the woman in the waiting room. Revelation 12:11 says, “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” How did I overcome the gripping fear? By crying out to Jesus–the only One Who could save me–and by testifying of His work in my life. Perfect love casts out what? Fear. Cry out to your Savior and tell of His great love for you…this makes you an overcomer!
Lastly, Psalm 73:28 says, But it is good for me to draw near to God;I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, That I may declare all Your works. I didn’t know as a child that trusting God with my eye…and later at 17, with my whole heart…would someday help me to declare His works. But I believed Him, trusted Him that He meant it when He said He loved me. That His every thought towards me was for good and blessing. That He wanted my heart. And He does.
Friends, He wants your heart, too. You are His special treasure…He wants your fears and worries…He wants you to overcome!
Thank You, Lord…for making me Your special treasure, for helping me overcome, for wanting my heart. Amen.