“You have sensitive eyes,” my eye doctor once told me.
He was referring to the fact that I came to see him whenever my vision changed—even the tiniest variation in my eyesight would send me in to get new lenses. He told me that most people lived with blurry vision for a while before coming in for a new set of glasses. But not me; I have sensitive eyes.
His observation came back to me after reading a comment on one of my blog posts about how I seemed to see deeper meaning in everyday objects, how I can look beyond the physical characteristics of something and make a spiritual connection.
For Lent, I am praying to see with sensitive eyes. I want to see with the eyes of my heart (Ephesians 1:18).
When I was in my twenties, I worked in an office with nine men; I was the only woman. My emotional state at the time was like a roller coaster. Which me would show up for work on any given day? Happy me? Angry me? Depressed me? Sad me? It was anyone’s guess.
One day, when depressed me showed up for work, one of the men stopped in front of my desk, paused and then said, “Do you know that your moods affect the entire office?”
“What?” I asked, incredulously. I thought I lived in a bubble, that I was the only one affected by my volatile emotional state. I really did not know anyone else noticed.
“You are the first person we meet when we walk through that door, and when you are in a bad mood, it affects all of us,” he explained.
Oh, those poor men, I thought. They had been enduring my unpredictable mood swings. My roller-coaster ride must have been like a ride through a house of horror for them.
But, having been made aware, I decided to change. I would park my moodiness at the door and enter the office even-keeled. It took effort, but over time, I became much more stable.One problem, though, was that some of the men had the image of the old me so firmly planted in their minds that they could not see the new me. They never really trusted that the old me would not reappear, so they never let their guard down long enough to get to know the new me.
It was a wonderful lesson about my own potential to grow and about allowing other people to grow—to expect the best in myself and in others, even if I am repeatedly disappointed.
That lesson has stayed with me, and I strive to be even-keeled. I also remind myself that I am not the same person I was yesterday—and neither is anyone else.
I want to be open to the people I meet every day and to look for the best in them. I want to practice seeing with sensitive eyes, with the eyes of my heart.