Saturday, November 26, 2011

Take the Blinders Off!

Matthew 20:34
Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.

I once was blind, but now I see . . .

Many years ago, when I was trying to secure a position as a paraprofessional in my county's school system, I became a substitute teacher. This role placed me with a wide variety of schools, classrooms, and age groups, sometimes with only an early morning notice. I had to be prepared for anything!

Anxious for a steady income, I accept a two-week call to fill in for a paraprofessional in a classroom for the blind. Who, me? As if I've had any experience with blind people?

I need the money. I take the assignment. I'm doubtful, though, as to any help I can possibly offer.

I am scared to death . . .

When I enter the classroom bright and early Monday morning, I feel like I've eaten butterflies for breakfast.

Thankfully, I am greeted by two warm, outgoing teachers who show me the ropes and put me at ease. Before I know it, the children, all seven of them, come clicking with their canes through the door.

Their day has already been a lengthy one. All ride a feeder bus to this special-needs school from a central location. Early!

I find myself wondering, since they can't watch the scenery as the ride, do they manage to catch some extra winks?

I feel sorry for them . . .

With greetings exchanged and introductions made, our day begins.

I enter into their world. The one of no sight. The one I fear will be dark and dismal . . .

Sunshine!

The light may be gone from their eyes, but not from their souls. They laugh, joke, play, sing, and learn as adeptly as other children.

When my two-week stint ends, it's so hard to say good-bye. The special bonds we have forged in that short period of time wish not to be broken. But, it's time to move on . . .

Not, however, without learning a powerful lesson. Not one I teach the children, but one they teach me.

Blind or not, they are precious in the sight of the Lord.

I was blind, but now I see . . .

Do you have misconceptions about persons with physical or mental handicaps?

Will you pray with me?
Lift the blinders from our eyes, Lord, that we might see every human being as a marvelous creation in Your image. Help us to not assume what someone can or cannot do because of a physical or mental handicap. Let us love them and see them as You do. Amen.

I am thankful that the Lord has opened the eyes of my heart.

Readings
Psalms 137:1-6 &-9), 144 or 104
Micah 7:11-20
1 Peter 4:7-19
Matthew 20:29-34

4 comments:

  1. It is wonderful to have experienced something like that - working with the blind. Experiences like these 'open' our eyes to many things which otherwise we would have taken for granted. Nice post.

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  2. Hi, Janu!
    Pun intended - this was truly an eye-opener for me as I had always felt uncomfortable around people with disabilities. I thank God for this experience!
    Thanks for stopping by!
    Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I’ve worked with multiple-handicapped children. Blind, cerebral palsied, epileptic, mentally handicapped, autistic, and deaf. And in some cases, they’ve taught me more than I could have ever taught them.

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  4. Hi, Debra, and thank you for stopping by!
    I am amazed that you have worked with some of these children; how much we have in common that we did not know? God is so good!
    They do teach us far more than we could ever hope to learn . . .
    Blessings always!

    ReplyDelete

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