From the day I was born, my world has revolved around my eyes.
In the early days, my eyes were used to capture – Adventure. Attention. Approval. Yet I never attempted to keep them hidden or hindered. Their big brown nature showered simple lashes and innocence.
My love for dressing up as a cowgirl or superhero quickly unveiled protector instincts in my toddler days. I may not have been able to protect myself from all, but looking out for my little brother was a whole different problem I could solve.
In elementary school, my eyes itched and strained, still morphed to absorb everything. Always watching. Always listening. No words or questions, just keeping the peace and ready to come to the rescue of whoever needed me.
Shame and hate shouted from my eyes in middle schools’ early days, especially when I found a body and wardrobe that didn’t look like everybody around me.
Instead of sulking, I succumbed to striving. For perfection from the church pew to the playbook. polygons to piles of laundry. Still no matter where my eyes wandered, I felt betrayed and empty.
My eyes longed for connection in high school. To not merely be seen, but for someone to know the real me.
Though despite my efforts, disappointment reigned. So I fortified walls and covered my face, making it my mission just to survive the day. I wondered what was the point when no one even knew my name.
The graduation stage brought possibility. But it didn’t take long for my eyes to learn of the college scene with pot and parties, then drowning in the real world of paying bills and adulting.
Lifes’ storms seemed to capsize me again and again. Yet, it was then, amidst all the waves and wind, Jesus came and challenged me to fix my eyes on Him.
Not long after, He opened a door and made it clear of the place He was calling me to in the mountains. It was far from perfect, yet full of grace and all races, the opportunity to love and be loved by family with all different backgrounds and ages.
Purpose and passion birthed from the plowing and planting of seeds within me and the eyes of all the students and staff around me. Life’s gifts were truly blossoming.
Although before long, all came crashing and my eyes were forced to focus on the empty classroom and boxes, and the battle raging within my failing body.
Pain and grief reigned for many days as the hospital became a regular place I stayed.
Though, thanks be to God, it didn’t remain that way.
Extending far greater than any sunrise or ocean waves, He reveals His face and grace in such intimate ways that unlike the world, they will never fade or wane.
For even in my paralysis and poor prognosis, brokenness and blindness, God is not finished with me and continues to humble me as He exchanges my vision for His.
Will you, too, give your eyes to Him?