In our church hymn book there are many songs that contain images of the ocean/sea. I grew up in the prairies though, so while I could imagine the ocean from seeing it on television, I still had never seen the ocean. I could not fully appreciate the imagery given in the songs about the ocean of God’s love because I had never really experienced an ocean. Probably, it would have been more appropriate for me to sing something like “Boundless as the endless wheat field”.
So, when I received my summer intern ship in a small community on the south coast of Newfoundland I was excited that I would finally see the ocean and be able to dip a toe in its mighty waters.
We arrived in Newfoundland via St. John’s and then I saw. My first ocean view was from the plane and it was amazing to see the ocean, and admittedly a little scary but WOW!
When I arrived at my summer placement I would find myself staring out the front window, or walking with my face to the ocean just staring at it, amazed that I never got run over by a car.
Though I have never been physically blind, my eyes had been opened to something I had never seen or experienced before.
Over time however, as I have now lived by the ocean for almost 3 years, my wonder and amazement has become less. As one becomes accustomed to something, it becomes easy to forget that early wonder of being able to see. In other words, I’ve gotten used to it.
I’ve gotten so used to it in fact that I can almost drive by the ocean and not notice it. Perhaps becoming blind again to the beauty of God that is all around me. Maybe in that way instead of being like the blind person who has had their eyes opened for the first time, I’m now more like the Pharisee not even aware of the ways in which I have become blind.
Translate that into a spiritual truth and isn’t that was Jesus is really saying as he defends himself in the passage? Sometimes we, who walk a spiritual journey suffer from blindness that we don’t even know we have and until we are willing to have our eyes opened by the Saviour we miss out on the beauty of his salvation to be experienced daily.
George Beverley Shea used to sing: The wonder of it all, the wonder of it all; just to think that God loves me.
Maybe the question needs to be for me, how might I be filled with that awe and wonder again? Only through the touch of Jesus.