"As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame; / [ . . . ] Each mortal thing does one thing and the same: / Deals out that being indoors each one dwells; / Selves -- goes itself; 'myself' it speaks and spells, / Crying 'What I do is me; for that I came'." --Gerard Manley Hopkins

08 June 2006

Trusting God

Tomorrow morning I go in for lasik surgery on both eyes. By God's grace, afterwards I'll be able to see at a distance without glasses and the astigmatism that's been the curse of my life will be gone. I may need reading glasses, but that's nothing in comparison to what I've dealt with since third grade.

The decision has made me think a lot about trust. We are, after all, talking about the part of my body that my work absolutely depends upon. I've often felt that if I couldn't read -- read anything I like, I mean, not just what's been made available in braille or on tape (which I can't concentrate on, anyway) -- I am not sure life would be worth living. I realize, of course, intellectually at least, that this is not the case, but it suggests how important the written word is to me. And I am, tomorrow morning, going to entrust this so vital part of my life to a relative stranger, someone I've met twice in my life.

It wasn't an easy decision. There are risks, and if one of those risks makes my sight worse than it now is, it will be cold comfort to know that I'm in a very small minority of those who've had the surgery done. So I thought a great deal about risk and what kinds of risks I'm willing to take. Finally, the doctor's reputation and track record, along with the 100% satisfaction I've encountered among all the people I know who have had it done or know someone who has, decided me that it is worth it. Now I have to trust him and his staff.

But ultimately, of course, it's not the doctor and his staff that I need to trust. Men are fallible, always. It's God I must place my trust in, knowing that He is the One sovereign over all that happens, including what happens in surgery tomorrow morning.

This is a hard lesson for me, one I've struggled with all my life as a Christian. Always I'm seeing fallible people and feeling fear -- what if this person lets me down, hurts me, fails me in some way? And of course, people have done so, again and again, just as I have done to others, because it's a fallen world and we the most fallen creatures in it.

But the only way to conquer the fear is to place my trust in God. Not trust that all will happen as I want it to, that my life will be perfect and wonderful and without pain if I trust in Him, but trust that He loves me and that whatever happens to me He will use for His glory -- if I allow Him to. Please Him this will be another step in that journey.

There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. (I John 4:18a)


GrumpyTeacher1 said...

May your surgery go well. May your eyes be perfect. May reading glasses be unnecessary.

Keep us posted.

Fieldfleur said...

Good thoughts on that difficult trust issue. Sending prayers your way for piercing sight and faith!


alaiyo said...

Thanks, y'all!



Lisa (Froggyhead) said...

A Wonderful way of looking at faith.

I trust your surgery went well and you are seeing as with new eyes. :)

Josh said...

Just got back from training in WA this evening, I hope that everything went well!