Dr. James L. Snyder
As I get older, and my goal is to get as old as I can, I begin to realize some of the things I haven't noticed in my life. You know how it is; things creep up little by little, and then all of a sudden, there it is.
That happened to me recently with my eyes. Since I was in the ninth grade (I will not disclose the year), I have been wearing glasses and have become used to wearing them. Every year I would have them upgraded, and the upgrade was little by little until if I took my glasses off, I couldn't see my real self.
The advantage of that is, I don’t wear my glasses when I look in the bathroom mirror. That saves me a lot of problems. What am I going to do what I can really see?
About two years ago, when I was at the eye doctor, he noticed some things in my eyes.
“You have cataracts in both eyes.”
I was caught by surprise and did know what he was talking about, but I responded despite that.
"No, Dr.," I said rather seriously, "I do not have a Cadillac, let alone two, but I do have a Chevrolet. I'm quite happy with my Chevrolet; thank you."
The doctor looked at me as though he was looking at some crazy person. Then he said something that somewhat confused me. "Do you think I'm a psychologist?"
Looking at me straight in the eyes, he said, "You have cataracts in your eyes."
"Well," I said, looking at him, "I did have my eye on several Cadillacs, the one I liked was a brilliant blue. The only problem with that Cadillac was I couldn't afford it. But I must tell you I'm still eyeing that Cadillac."
"Look at me," the doctor said rather sternly, "I am not talking about Cadillacs; I'm talking about cataracts in your eyes. You will need surgery to remove those cataracts."
I must say I felt a little embarrassed. I don't know if the doctor spoke with a lisp or I was hearing with a lisp, I thought he said Cadillac, which confused me.
He then explained what this cataract business was all about and how I should go and get them removed and replaced.
That was almost two years ago, and because of the pandemic, everything pretty much shut down.
Then recently, things began to open up, and I could go to the eye clinic and get prepped for surgery. As they explained it to me, it would take approximately six weeks to have it done, although the surgery itself would be about 15 minutes. They had to do one eye and then two weeks later do the other eye. There were two weeks of preparation before and two weeks after to complete the process.
The eye clinic was on the other side of town, and I could not drive my vehicle when I went to visit them. Henceforth, my chauffeur for those appointments was the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage.
Then the day of the actual surgery came, and I was chauffeured to the eye clinic and went in for the preparation. I'm not sure why so much paperwork is needed these days, but I signed paper after paper after paper. I got to the point where I almost forgot what my name was.
Then I went in, and the nurse took me to prepare for the doctor's surgery. The nurse spent about an hour and a half with me while the doctor used only 15 minutes.
There comes a point when I have had enough. You go through all the routine in checking the blood pressure and extracting blood from my body. I know it's all necessary, but it sure can be monotonous.
She was finishing all of the prep work and was ready to take me in so that the doctor could do the surgery on my cataract.
At that point, I said very seriously, "Could I change my mind?"
She looked at me and sighed very deeply, and I could see she was not a happy camper. But she said very calmly, "Yes, you can change your mind if you really want to."
"Great," I chirped, "can I have your mind?"
Staring at me, she then gave me a piece of her mind. I didn't see that one coming.
The surgery went fine, and I was surprised. I have been wearing glasses for a long time, and now, out of my left eye, I could see almost perfectly, whatever that is. I couldn't see up close, and the doctor said I would probably need reading glasses. But I have never seen the world so bright as I did that day.
Darkness seems to creep up on a person without that person even knowing it. That happened with me. Nothing is better than seeing the brightness of the light.
As my wife was driving me home, I happen to think of a verse of Scripture. “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1).
Sometimes I get discouraged by the darkness around me and don't realize how dark it is. But when I put my eyes on the Lord Jesus Christ in the Bible, I see that marvelous light that lighteth the world.
Dr. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, 1471 Pine Road, Ocala, FL 34472. He lives with his wife in Silver Springs Shores. Call him at 352-687-4240 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The church web site is www.whatafellowship.com.