Eyes to See
“The question is not what you look at, but what you see.”
Henry David Thoreau
I have been searching for a hose nozzle for two weeks. I bought it last year; it's one of those good ones with a handle and several different spray settings. I have looked everywhere—in the yard, where I attached the hose to a sprinkler, on both porches, in the basement. I've searched multiple times with no luck. This morning, I sat down to write at my usual place on the porch, looked across the table, and there lay the nozzle. Who can say why the mind plays such tricks on us? Why do we fail to register what is right in front of our faces?
We do this in many aspects of our lives. We say, “I just didn't see this coming,” when everyone around us clearly did. We do it with people, as well. We develop an opinion based on first impressions and hearsay, and then fit that human being into a template of our own making. Sometimes, we're right—sometimes the first thirty seconds is all we need to assess their personality, and whether or not we like them. But what if we meet them when they're having a bad day; what if they've just lost a loved one, or they've been fighting with their mate, or they've got a sick child that's weighing heavily on them? Or, what if we are encountering one of those hardships ourselves on that day? Would that color our vision? Our eyes see only what is already in our mind and our heart.
We have eyes to see, and ears to hear, but sometimes our judgment is not so keen. In these polarized times, we might learn to say, “I could be wrong about this.” We might search our own hearts to see what's hidden there. There could be something in plain sight that we are simply missing.
In the Spirit,