I didn’t mean to stare and intrude in their private moment, but I could not look away. It felt like God was showing me a lesson and I dare not miss it. So I watched. The young boy’s mom put her hand gently on his arm and guided him forward in line as it moved closer and closer to the front where communion servers were distributing the elements and repeating “His blood shed for you. His body broken for you.” When it was almost the boy’s turn, the mom whispered something in his ear, possibly “you’re next” or “it’s your turn.” His white cane tapped the floor until he was in front of the bread being offered to him. His mom lifted his hands to the loaf and he tore off a small piece in his unpracticed yet determined hands. “His body broken for you.” In that moment I thought “God, you could heal his blindness ---it would be easy for you!” And I felt God tell me surely this boy sees more than I realize. Next, the boy with his mom’s hand on his elbow again, shuffled one step to the right where she then moved his hand until it touched the glass. He carefully dipped the bread into the grape juice until his fingers were wet which meant his bread was also soaked. “His blood shed for you.” I lowered my head and closed my eyes. With tears spilling onto my cheeks, I realized God was showing me that while He could easily heal the boy like he healed the blind man in Mark 8 and John 9, the boy taking communion could actually already see better than most people with 20/20 vision. He saw what was important, and with the guidance of someone who loved him the most, he was able to walk towards it.
My daughter’s friend’s college roommate declared during one of their late night talks, she was not going to take her children to church but was going to let them decide whether or not to go once they got older. She might have felt liberated from any spiritual responsibility, yet I keep getting drawn back to the boy taking communion.
I’ve had to wear corrective lens since sixth grade and I still remember the extreme difference my new glasses made as mom and I walked out of the optometrist’s office in Buckhannon and saw leaves on distant trees for the first time. Being nearsighted, I hadn’t realized things far away could be so clear! I wonder how many of us are so ‘nearsighted’ that we can’t imagine eternity or the importance of things yet unseen. Or maybe at times we are ‘farsighted’ and can’t see things clearly because we are too close to it. Or in extremely troubled times we might even be blinded by our circumstances.
Many things blind us or at least cloud our vision; insecurities, anger, self-righteousness, greed, lust, misunderstandings, addictions, etc. Sometimes it’s as though we are walking around with blindfolds on, which actually happened in last year’s terrible post-apocalyptic horror movie called BirdBox. It spoke volumes about the insensitive lack of wisdom coming out of Hollywood we are so easily misguided by. The movie graphically showed an epidemic of suicides, carelessly depicted mental illness, and started a craze called the bird box challenge which swept the nation with people blindfolding themselves and their kids and then doing stunts resulting in serious injuries. I tell you, it’s like the world is crazy and can’t get to hell fast enough.
And then I remember the little blind boy taking communion…and am reminded with renewed hope that “We walk by faith, not by sight.” (2 Cor. 5:7) My prayer is that, like the boy, we are being lead towards Jesus by people who love us, all the while listening to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. “…Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying ‘This is the way, walk in it, When you turn to the right hand, or when you turn to the left.’”(Isaiah 30:21) Sometimes we get an eye-opening lesson in trust when we look up;)
Janet Cowger- Fliegel