I am physically near sighted and because of this I wear contacts which give me the visual clarity to see things that I otherwise would be not be able to see. Yesterday I was changing out my contacts, and was opening up a new box to replace them. Usually within the box there is a container for the right eye, and for the left, as well as usually a third empty container which gives me the prescription of each eye. I have an astigmatism (one eye being stronger than the other), and therefore have separate prescriptions for each eye, so it is important to have that third box as a guide to know which container of contacts is for which eye. Yesterday I did not have that though, and just had to guess at which container was for which eye.
I put in my contacts based on what was comfortable, and I thought I could see pretty well. As I went throughout the day, what was most comfortable though, ended up not being what was most beneficial. Though my eyes were comfortable, my vision was somewhat blurry. I could see pretty well, but ultimately I could not see the best that I was intended to. Why was that? Because each eye required a certain prescription contact, and each contact was intended for a specific eye. Because I had placed my contacts in the wrong eyes, the prescription that was intended for one eye was instead being used for an eye that it was not intended for, and vice versa. Thus, the contacts that were designed to give me clarity, ultimately blurred my vision. It wasn’t until I switched my contacts to the right eyes that I could see as my doctor had intended me to see.
How true this is in life. We many times take our sight into our own hands. We attempt to see the truths of life on our own. Without a guide, we wing it. We find what’s comfortable, and that becomes our truth, all the while not even knowing that our vision is blurred, and that we truly cannot see. We need a guide. A guide that will take our blurred vision to life and give us sight.
In Psalm 23, the Psalmist speaks to this guide that we have in Jesus:
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
forever. (Psalm 23)
We have always needed a guide, but even more so now, in this season of pandemic, loss, and uncertainty. I’m thankful that we have that guide in Jesus. Our shepherd who will provide for us, and lead us to green pastures of spiritual nourishment. Our shepherd who leads us to rest and the restoring of our souls. Our shepherd who leads us in the right paths for His glory and His name’s sake. Our shepherd who will walk with us through our darkest valleys, riddled with fears, anxieties, hurts, and disappointments, but who will be our comforter through it all. Our shepherd who will prepare a table before us, even within the presence of our enemies. Our Shepherd who has steadfast love and kindness and goodness that will follow us all the days of our lives. This is the Shepherd and guide that we need.
I hope you will be encouraged today that life is not aimless, purposeless, or void of meaning. It may feel as though everything in this season has been stripped away from us: our freedoms, sanity, even health, but we can always count on Jesus being our good Shepherd, who will guide us through the hard times, rejoice with us in the good, and lead us to good paths even in the uncertainties of life.
Here is a link to our Sunday Sermon:
Picture taken from: https://padreperegrino.org/2017/04/