Sitting between two men that I didn’t know was the setting for this tale of discovery.
Whilst running a School club, we had invited a brilliantly talented pianist to play to the children. He was blind but had applied himself to learning the piano and could paint musical pictures of what he ‘saw’ with his playing. It was simply amazing and the children were enthralled.
Following this event we took him to a cafe for lunch, he sat on my right and one of his friends sat to my left. During the introductions, the man on my left asked me what I did to which I replied, ‘Nothing.’ Now it’s not that I’m idle but at this particular point in time I had been recovering from two frozen shoulders and had slipped in the bath breaking few ribs. I was in so much pain it was difficult to function. However, when I answered ‘Nothing’, there was an uproar from the rest of the group who knew me and protested loudly that I was an artist and that I had in fact painted all the pictures on the cafe walls. This was true, so I started to explain myself; often we are defined by the things we do and as I had been stripped of everything I normally did had replied, ‘Nothing’.
So who am I and what defines me?
I was discovering that I was still ‘me’ regardless of what I could do, but his response to my surmisings was interesting. He confessed that he had recently lost his job and the first thing he had done with his pay off was to buy a really impressive car; he admitted doing this so he would be defined by the car and not by his sudden lack of position.
During this conversation I was also talking with the blind man on my right and we were getting on so well. He was sharing scripture and little gems of conversation. It was one of those beautifully easy things, talking to him. He liked me. It was then I ‘saw’ it. This man couldn’t see me. He knew little of my age or my looks and he certainly couldn’t see the paintings on the wall; the works of my hands. So what did he see? He saw me.
And this is what I saw; it was a picture of God and his love for me. He does not look at what I do, He does not consider my ageing face, He just ‘gets’ me, the real me, the me He designed – the me the blind man saw.
Now maybe that is how we should see ourselves!
For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skilfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; And in Your book were all written The days that were ordained for me, When as yet there was not one of them. How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand. When I awake, I am still with You. Psalm 139:13-18 NASB