Sunday, May 25, 2014

Healing Blindness

Our nine-year-old daughter recently performed with her ballet company at a local nursing home. While she was off-stage and awaiting her next time on-stage my wife noticed her in the audience...talking during the performance...not exactly where she was supposed to be.

This is nearly every parents' nightmare when "my child" is "THE problem," in any given situation.  My wife was far enough away from her that she couldn't stop her from what she thought was her usual pattern of, "talking the ear off of anyone who will listen."

Our daughter's name is, "Hannah" which means, "grace."  In this case her name was going to be very fitting in a couple of ways as her mother would require the attitude of grace not to strangle her...and Hannah would require God's grace not to be strangled...once the show was over.

What we later found out about our seemingly rude and distracting little girl would forever change my outlook toward our daughter and her often "gregarious" personality.  The woman that Hannah had been talking to is blind.  Hannah had been sitting next to her describing every detail of the performance to this woman who would otherwise only be able to listen to the music.  My wife asked her, "how did you know she was blind?" Hannah said, "First I saw her eyes were whitish...and she was wearing a little tag that said, "I am blind."

When my wife recounted this story to me I was deeply moved.  I realized that I have often and far too quickly squelched and/or chastised her for being, "too talkative" or "distracting." Yes, often she is!  But in this case I told my wife, actually holding back a tear, that we got, "one of the good ones."  Hannah is one of the good ones. She is a sure sign of God's grace to me.

I have been proud of her on many occasions as she seems drawn to the downcast and to the, "less popular" kids...almost as a rule. In this case I am proud because Hannah truly lived up to her name~ not so much requiring God's grace as actively spreading it! I pray that she never loses this spark~ this tendency to reach out to our fellow children of God.  As a child of God, even when she grows older, I hope she will always choose to err on the side of love and never choose to hold back! To me, this would be the true measure of success. There is a type of blindness that is far worse than actual physical blindness and that is to not be able to see a fellow child of God in every person we meet...not so see their inherent goodness no matter how they are acting in the moment. Thank you Hannah for this reminder. I hope to continue to learn what you already seem to know.

Hannah (right) with her little sister Sophia