Friday, January 15, 2016

Look, Listen, Touch

January 15, 2016

Anyone who knows me knows that I've had hearing problems for years. It apparently is a genetic gift courtesy of my paternal grandmother who was almost totally deaf by the time she died. The good news is that she lived to be 100, so I have plenty of good years and hearing aids ahead of me. The bad news is that lately I've been having some vision problems. I've worn glasses since I was 12 when they figured out I wasn't as dumb as I was blind. Couldn't see the board. Linda thinks it's because I spend too much time with the iPad. She could be right. What I know is that sometimes at night when I'm driving I see double. Four taillights instead of two, double signs and lines in the road. And when I'm trying to read music, at times it's hard to tell if a note is on a line or a space. Makes for some interesting jazz!

Helen Keller was a marvel. Having lost both sight and hearing at 19 months to what was called "brain fever," but was likely either scarlet fever or meningitis. Without these two senses, she learned to communicate through touch, and eventually she learned to speak. But it was touch that first connected her to the world around her.

This morning was busy. I had breakfast with a friend, then off to our local writers' group from which I headed to our son's to remove the license plates from the car we gave Alex and Abi. The studs had to be drilled out. Linda invited me to go to town with her, and upon returning home, I got the tractor out so I could scrape down the packed snow in Jessie's driveway. I brought in some wood, practiced my bassoon, and next thing I know, the grandkids are arriving for the night.

When I say I didn't have time to read my Bible and pray, the more spiritual among us would chastise me for not doing that first, and they are probably right, but I suspect most of us have those days when things start popping first thing in the morning and sweep us through the day like a leaf being swept down a swollen creek in the springtime. At dinner time with the grandkids, we always go around the table with "High-Low," each one telling what was their "high" and "low" of the day. Tonight we added one: "Where did you see God?"

Apart from Scripture, it is hard to see where God is working. It is the Bible that opens my eyes to  his wonders, and when I don't read it, I can soon lose the ability to recognize his handiwork all around me. And apart from the Scriptures, I cannot hear God's voice. Just as sight and hearing connects me to the world around me, it is the Bible and prayer that enables me to connect with God; seeing his work and hearing his voice, leading me to a deeper form of communion.

Touch is perhaps the most intimate form of communication, and it is through voice and sight that we are bid to come and experience the intimacy of God's touch. I am grateful tonight for spiritual sight and sound, and for spiritual touch that flows from them. And I am grateful that even in those days when I fall short and temporarily lose the intimacy, God never abandons me and continually calls me back to that place where his Spirit dwells, speaking wordlessly, revealing wonders to spiritual eyes, and reaching out to touch my soul with the fingers of his heart.

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