Crawling under the barb wire fence, I headed up the hillside—there was no trail but I knew the way. I climbed around rocks the size of large trucks, pulled my way through the brush, and circled the trunks of huge Douglas Fir trees. Several times I stopped to glance around, making sure I was heading in the right direction, before resuming the climb.
Pulling aside a few more fir branches, I felt the sunshine on my face as I entered a small clearing. I walked across what I called, “my marble slab,” though I knew it was really only granite. Here was a place I would be alone, where I could cry and no one but God would hear.
I walked a dozen steps and settled down on the edge of the granite slab, savoring the quietness. Grasping a branch of the small pine tree struggling to grow in a crack in the granite slab, I turned to look across the valley below. I could identify several buildings in town including the west side of the hospital I should be working in instead of having a pity party on top of a hill.
Bending forward, my elbows on my knees, I rested my forehead in my hands as fear and pity nearly overwhelmed me. “God, why? I enjoy my nursing job, the job I struggled so hard to gain and now you take it away from me. Why Father? Now, what am I to do—how do I feed my family?” What good is a blind man?” The tears flowed as I felt the pity boiling up inside me.
“What about this tree?”
Raising my head I looked around to see who had spoken these words, but I was still alone. Yet, I was sure I had heard someone speak. Slowly I turned to look at the little tree. There it stood, buffeted by a winter storm, stunted from lack of water and nutrients, but each spring it grew a little taller, its trunk trying valiantly to open the crack a little wider to allow it to live.
My eyes searched the hillsides, pasting a photograph in my mind no one could ever remove. The hills were ablaze in color, the brilliant red and gold of the Western Larch as it burst forth just before winter stripped it bare. Interspersed with the larch was the dark green of the Ponderosa Pine and Douglas Fir, their tops stretching in the clean air. The sun shone on the hills out of a brilliant blue sky, no smog to dim its beauty.
Rising, I straightened my back. “Okay little pine, if you can live under the hardships you have, I will live too. God may have another job for me, but whatever, I will trust in Him. Maybe the doctor is wrong, but if I go blind, God will help me—He will give me another work for Him to do.”
Returning home, my heart felt at peace. God would help me, whatever path He led me down.
I would retrace this walk many times over the early years as I learned to trust Him, and each time I’d return home, assured He knew what was best for me—He would see us through.
God did help me and today I am in touch with blind people around this globe, some even willing to learn more about the God who is returning soon for His people. I had to leave my nursing behind but with the computer, internet, He has taught me to write for Him.
Nor did I give up my love for growing a garden, often using tools the doctor had told me I could never use again. Each year I grow a large garden, working the soil, planting, weeding, watering, and harvesting the crops. Yes, I may be blind but with God’s help, I am not helpless. He knew the path I was to follow and He has never left me alone.
Ernest Jones writes from the Pacific Northwest.© 2002 - 2021, AnswersForMe.org. All rights reserved. Click here for content usage information.