When I was just 13, I got my first pair of glasses. Childhood measles had left me severely myopic, something an alert school nurse finally picked up on. Both my parents had excellent eyesight and it naturally never occurred to them that my increasingly poor marks at school were because I could not see clearly. In my school, in those olden days, tests were written by the teacher on the blackboard, and I just assumed I needed to get closer to it, but eventually even that did not help me.
So began my long association with glasses. My wedding photos show me with very black Nana Mouskouri frames, which, I confess, I had someone remove via photoshop in later years…ah, such is vanity! 😊 In my 30’s,a careless observation from someone whose opinion should not have mattered, sent me down the contact lens path. I have worn frames of just about every shape and color, and have had more prescriptions than I care to remember! Hopefully, there is some person somewhere, who dug through a barrel of donated specs and is grateful for the slow decline in my sight.
Sight is such a precious thing and now, with macular degeneration in both eyes, I am so grateful I live in the time of e-readers and love the way I can enlarge the font on my Kindle 😊 But I really miss the quiet comfort of holding a beloved book, the smell of its paper and especially the markings that say, “Friend of quiet hours.” Sadly, my old Bible, although next to my chair, is seldom opened because the print defeats my eager heart, and my underlinings and notes in the margins, are largely inaccessible to me now.
So, today I am profoundly grateful for the faithful preaching of the Word that is the foundation of my life. My father always preached the whole counsel of God, from Genesis to Revelations and I sat through so many of his bible studies (often woefully bored as a child 😊), that I could probably reproduce them, all these years later. Now, in my senior years, I am frequently surprised by the riches of what surfaces in my spirit from so long ago. I was not consciously “hiding God’s word in my heart,” especially as a child, but that is exactly what good, faithful preaching does. The Word of God “is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.” (Hebrews4:12)
And because it is alive, it takes up residence in our hearts “that I might not sin against you.” (Psalm119:11)