We truly are a family redefined. We are husband, wife, son, daughter, step children, biological and adopted children and most importantly, Children of God.

A friend pointed out that I needed to update my blog header. After our adoption from Ethiopia, I had updated it stating how the adoption of Sara Joy completed our family. Well... the journey continues. After much prayer, we have decided to follow what we feel is God's calling for us...we went to Ghana with the intention of adopting a four year old girl, Isabella Hope. Little did we know that she would be the catalyst to bringing home not only her, but her half brother and sister. We will now be adding not only Isabella Hope to our family, but also Mary Grace (9) and Gilbert (6) who we will transition to the name Nathaniel Timothy. The shock is wearing off and the JOY and EXCITEMENT are overwhelming. Now truly, our family is complete. The great part of journeying with God, is that it's always an adventure. He knows where we are going, and for us it is all a marvelous surprise. Looking forward to sharing our family adventures as we walk daily through life and as we venture off to Ghana to bring home Mary, Nate and Isabella! It's always an adventure redefining our family!

Monday, July 1, 2013

ABC's of My Heart: B = Blind

2 Corinthians 5:7 - For we walk by faith, not by sight

We're all born blind.  You don't believe me?  Well, it's true.  I'll tell you how.  But first, a story.

I was born with a condition that leads to blindness.  I spent a good portion of my youth without any symptoms.  I read like a champion.  I passed all my eye tests.  I loved schoolwork.  I was a great student.  I enjoyed drawing.  Nothing would have made you believe, that lurking in the background was blindness.  I turned 16 and got my driver's license.  No problem.  I was never really good at sports, but figured that was just me.  Not everyone is good at sports.  
Ok, our skiing didn't look EXACTLY like this, but close :)
I loved to water ski.  One day, I was water skiing with a friend behind our boat.  We were double skiing. I came into the wake at the same time she did.  We collided.  I didn't see it coming.  Accidents happen.  

I worked at a festival with my mom one summer.  It was the summer I turned 16.  My mom's work had a booth and they needed volunteers.  I was "volunteered" to volunteer.  I drove downtown and on the way, I got in an accident.  I didn't see a car that was in my blind spot as I switched lanes.  I was sure that I had looked.  Accidents happen.

I went off to college and got my degree in Chemistry.  Six month later, after a prolonged period of time running into people and feeling like a klutz, I called my eye doctor out of desperation.  I told him there was either something wrong with my eyes, or I was crazy.  Well, contrary to popular belief, I'm not crazy.  There was something wrong with my eyes.  I was diagnosed with a condition called Retinitis Pigmentosa.  It is a degenerative eye condition that robs you of your peripheral vision, color vision, night vision and depth perception.  I'm now legally blind with less than 10 degrees of vision.  My color vision is very poor.  I can only see certain colors with accuracy.  I  have limited depth perception and no night vision.  I'm blind.
Apparently there is the number "45" in here.  I had to ask my son, because I can't see it.

It was a series of "symptoms" that lead me to discovering my condition.  Interestingly enough, the discovery of this blindness led me to the realization that I suffered from two types of blindness.  One thankfully had a cure.  Retinitis Pigmentosa has no cure... but it lead me to discover my second blindness that indeed has a cure.  Look at my symptoms closely, you may see them in yourself and find you too have this secondary blindness and have not yet found the cure.

We are all born blind.  I said that in the beginning and left you to ponder over it.  You can ponder a little more as I describe  how I came to discover my primary (yet found secondarily) blindness.  As you can tell from my story above, you are able to go through life without realizing you have a lurking condition - a blindness.  I lived for 23 years before anyone diagnosed my eye condition.  I lived for an additional 8 years before the second condition came to light.  It was through symptoms that it too was diagnosed.

After being diagnosed with RP, I began to feel bitter.  I was angry, frustrated and suffered from the "why me" syndrome. I was determined not to let this condition get the best of me though, so I put on a happy face and moved forward through life.  What happened though, is when people got close to me, and I was comfortable enough with them, they saw the true me that was lurking underneath.  The one that was not as confident as I demonstrated on the outside.  The one that was scared in spite of my seeming courage.  They saw the anger that lurked beneath the smile.  They witnessed the frustration that was just beneath the surface of my seeming contentment.  Fear, anger, frustration, tears, discontentment.... all symptoms.  Do you recognize them?  If you do, it may be because you too, are blind.  You were born blind remember.  Some of you found the cure early.  I found it when I was 31.  The cure for my spiritual blindness.  

As I said, we are all born blind.  Spiritually blind.  We are not born with Christ in us.  We are not born with an eternal home with God.  We are born into sin and hardship.  We are born into selfishness.  Even the cutest baby is born into sin.  We have a sin nature.  This sin nature is the cause of our blindness.  We need to seek out the cure.  The cure is Christ.  

I accepted Christ into my life when I was 31 years old.  Accepting Christ into my life cured my spiritual blindness.  Since I was on a roll with God, I decided... if He can cure something as significant and eternal as my spiritual blindness, then surely He can and will cure my physical blindness.  I asked and I waited.  I've been waiting 10 years now.  In that time I have found victory over:






It's been replaced with purpose, security, contentment and joy.  It didn't happen overnight, but it has happened.  They say when you accept Christ in your life you become a new creature, and anyone who knew me in the years and even months prior to becoming a Christian and then who have witnessed the transformation after my acceptance of Christ into my heart will attest to the fact that I am indeed a new creature in Christ.  I trust in Him.  I trust in His provisions.  I am no longer afraid.  I am no longer angry when I ask God to cure my physical blindness and he says no, because I know He has a purpose for me and for this condition in my life.  

I was born twice blind.  God cured my spiritual blindness.  I'm so thankful.  I can live with the physical blindness, because I know I will spend eternity fully sighted in the presence of my Savior.  What good would physical sight do for me, for this short time on earth, without spiritual vision?  I'd be left, separated from my Savior in a literal hell.  I'm thankful that God chooses how and what to cure.  If given a choice, I probably would have chosen to have my physical blindness cured, because I was not even aware of my spiritual blindness for quite some time.  That would have been an awful mistake on my part.  God left me there in my blindness- digging myself deep into a pit of dispair and ugliness and then, when I called out, He met me there and brought me into the light.  

Most people aren't born both spiritually and physically blind... but do you know the symptoms of spiritual blindness?  They are different for everyone.  They may come in the form of addiction, greed, anger, vanity, discontentment, fear... the list goes on and on... but for all these things, there is one cure.  Jesus Christ.  Have you found the cure?  It's never too late - until you die.  I was 31.  How old were you when you found the cure?

Also, have you shared the cure with others?  I know if I found the cure to RP, I'd put it on the internet.  I'd shout it from the rooftops.  I'd go around the world giving it to others.  But what about the cure for spiritual blindness?  We are all a little more quiet about that.  Why not share it?  It's so much more important than any physical ailment.  Eternity depends on it!

Don't be blind any more.  Know the symptoms, seek the cure and share it with others!

Oh, and the answer  (cure) I have been waiting on God for, for 10 years now... the question I asked Him 10 years ago... to no longer be physically blind.  He's answered me.  He's told me "no".  I don't believe a cure will come for me.  I'm ok with that.  God gently gave me the answer, and with that came peace.  Peace and His provisions.  He must have something pretty special planned for me with this condition to leave me in it... because after all, I'm His child.  For Him to leave me like this, must mean there's a bigger and better reason for it that I'm just not yet aware of.  He wouldn't leave me this way otherwise.  I trust Him!  There is a reason and I'm content in His answer.

In Christ,


TaMara Sloan said...

I love how you use something in your own life to help point others to the Savior!

sarita edgerton said...

Reminds me of when Paul spoke of his thorn. God told him no until he died. Then, he was fully cured! Praise God, you have been reborn! I was 25 when my spiritual blindness was cured!

Kenan said...

Love how open and honest you are!! Blessing to you and your family!!