Clearer Vision


For several years, I had the opportunity to travel on medical mission teams with Mercy International. As a non-medical person, I wasn’t sure exactly how helpful I could be, but I found two roles where I was a productive member of the team. One of these roles was as a pharmacy tech. The other was giving eye exams and fitting patients with custom eyeglasses. I found profound satisfaction in taking a patient who had walked in with poor vision and watching them walk out with greatly improved vision. It was so wonderful to see a child’s face light up when they were able to clearly see their mother’s face for the first time, or to see a little old woman remove a Bible from her purse and read without squinting. And of course, the most amazing experience was Yolanda, who walked in legally blind and walked out seeing 20/20!

I’m diligent about getting my eyes checked. Macular degeneration runs in my family; my grandfather went totally blind in the last years of his life. I try to make sure that I take care of my vision as well as I can. But sometimes, no matter how hard I try, things happen to my vision that are out of my control. Like last year, when a mistake was made on my prescription, and I was given glasses that ruined my depth perception. I couldn’t pretend there was nothing wrong… that would have been an accident waiting to happen. And there was nothing I could do to fix the glasses. I simply had to give them back to the optician and have them remade by someone who knew better than I did.

I don’t always see life clearly, either. Oh, I try. But sometimes my lenses are dirtied or fogged by emotions, assumptions, misconceptions, or opinions. When my hands are dirty, I can’t clean my glasses. And when my glasses are broken, I can’t fix them. At those times, even if I think I’m seeing clearly, sometimes I’m not. And a lot of the time, deep down, I know better.

In Chapter 11 of The Hiding Place, Corrie tells the story of her interrogations by a lieutenant, who ends up being captivated with hearing Corrie talk about her life, her family, and even her faith. And when the lieutenant debated with Corrie, she said something that I found enlightening.

“The truth, sir,” I said, swallowing, “is that God’s viewpoint is sometimes different from ours – so different that we could not even guess at it unless He had given us a Book which tells us such things.” (ebook location 3026)

And there, I’m taken back to the book of James.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5 NIV

This post is part of a weekly discussion on Corrie ten Boom’s classic, “The Hiding Place.” You do not have to read the book to weigh in on whatever topic is being discussed. However, if you have written a response to this week’s chapter, go visit Jason, my co-facilitator, at Connecting to Impact, to link it up at the widget and to see what he has to say.

About Sarah Salter


  1. Barbara Capps says:

    Didn’t know which way you were going to go with that Chapter.. But as usual it was good… And all we have to do is ask..:)

  2. So cool that you, Dusty, and I picked the same quotes and ended up with such diverse posts. Love how God works! I’m with you. His wisdom is far superior in every way and it’s the only perspective worth clinging to. Thanks Sarah.

  3. Sarah Salter says:

    Jason, your blog won’t let me submit my comment, so I’m responding to your post here, cool? Here ’tis: My pastor from when I was in college gave a great analogy once about how when he was a kid, he and his siblings (who lived out in rural SC) would go walking and pick up bottles off the side of the road. They would take them home, dirty as they were, wash them really well, and take them and turn them in for a nickel each. And with God, we are like those bottles. We can be buried in the dirt or garbage. We can even be shattered. And he picks us up, puts us back together, washes us, and redeems us. 🙂

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