I have been diagnosed with glaucoma. This past Tuesday I took my annual Vision Field test to determine whether or not I've lost more sight and just how much. I left with a decided bad feeling. There were huge gaps in my vision of which I had not really been aware, except that I keep falling over things that have totally eluded my sight....or getting smacked in the head by tree limbs. Today I go to see the ophthalmologist to get the official bad news.
So I have been thinking about "Faith vs. Sight." To those of us who are losing our sight, sight is a precious commodity...and a heartbreaking loss. But in places such as in my friend, Nan Jones' post: http://morningglorylights.blogspot.com/2016/04/finding-gods-presence-battle-between.html, sight is given a bad rap....when you compare it with the value of faith. And yes, I can see that because I would willingly trade in both eyes for the security of a place in heaven. Who wouldn't? (I'll tell you who: those who either don't believe in heaven or those who have fallen for the stupid "strumming harps and floating on clouds" deception about heaven.)
Why do we feel we can live without faith but so desperately need our sight? It depends on whether you are looking with temporal or eternal eyes. I want to look at a passage which is the best resource Scripture offers on the "sight vs faith" contrast.
2 Cor. 5:6-8 NLTThe NLT looks at these verses in terms of viewing our salvation and our eternal destiny with eyes of faith rather than by human understanding and a reliance on the material, temporal world. Herein lies our confidence: our life does not lie in our physical being but in our position in our heavenly home with the Lord.
6 So we are always confident, even though we know that as long as we live in these bodies we are not at home with the Lord. 7 For we live by believing and not by seeing. 8 Yes, we are fully confident, and we would rather be away from these earthly bodies, for then we will be at home with the Lord.
2 Cor. 5:6-8 NASBIn the NASB the meaning is a little differently construed as opposed to the NLT. It is saying that since we are here on earth, apart from God's physical manifestation, we must walk using our inner vision, our faith, rather than going by that which we see around us, which, obviously could be disheartening were that all that exists. That means we must take a "Godview" of what surrounds us....polish up those lenses of faith and look with eternal eyes at both the "reality" around us and REALITY as it is in heaven.
Therefore, being always of good courage, and knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord— 7 for we walk by faith, not by *sight— 8 we are of good courage, I say, and prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord.
*footnote for vs 7 : "appearance"
"Be Thou My Vision"
With God as our vision we have a "Faith lens" a God established filter through which we can see the world. It is to look "with eyes of faith" - the best possible combination of sight and faith. This keeps us from being tripped up by the pits in the ground which threaten to swallow us whole. It gives us a Heaven-view of the world around us....we see the cosmic struggles that take place all around us between Good and evil. That which motivates us is not what motivates the rest of the world (or it should NOT be, if it is, then polish up your faith-lens.)
So, what does this all mean to me? I, who am teetering on the brink of such a great loss? It means to me that I am to be open, yielded and surrendered to what God has in store for me, and even if that were to mean total blindness, to trust that God knows what he is doing and has a purpose in it. It is to look for ways in which I may be available and to serve with the limitations I have, knowing that GOD will get the glory by using such an obviously weak and flawed vessel as myself.
It means to go to and leave this appointment today with the words of the Shunammite woman, "It is well" Even though, no, it really isn't. But REALLY, it is. And that, right there, is the tension between things believed, things seen, and things as they really are. (2 Kings 4 --see Nan Jones' post for more of that story)
Need to take a new look around you? Polish those faith lenses. Ask God to reveal HIS view of things to you. Don't depend purely on your earthly eyes...as we all know, they can be deceived.