The Lord sets prisoners free and gives sight to the blind. Psalm 146: 7b-8a
When I was a kid, the local movie theater entrance opened right onto the street. After two hours in the theater my eyes adjusted to the darkness. Stepping into broad daylight was blinding until my eyes readjusted. When we become accustomed to looking at things in a certain way, we may not be able to see some glaring truth about a given person or situation. Even when it is blatantly obvious to others, we simply won’t be able to see if our denial is too thick. The same is true when those we care about are painfully oblivious to what is obvious to us. By definition, we can’t see our own areas of blindness. Sometimes only God can empower us to see the truth.
The blindness of denial serves a purpose, or people wouldn’t cling to it. It is a protection of sorts, from truths we aren’t ready to deal with…but while we are getting ready, the harm to others and to ourselves can be detrimental. What if we never get ready? If someone tries to strip away our denial, we may hold on more tightly. It’s like the fable of the wind and the sun having a contest to see who could get a man to remove his coat. The harder the wind blew, the more tightly the man wrapped his coat around him. When the sun poured out it’s warmth, and the man took his coat off willingly.
When we speak the truth in love, it creates an atmosphere of safety. Others may then feel safe enough to risk taking off their coat of denial. In non-threatening environments, we can afford to see what we were blind to. When we speak the truth in love, we become instruments the Lord can use to give sight to the blind.
Prayer: Lord, show us our areas of blindness and help us see.
Reflection for sharing: What helps you feel safe enough to face your blind spots? How can you help others feel that way?