Do you have 2020 vision?
I ask the question knowing looking directly at the new year, 2020. Do you have 2020 vision? Did you know there will never be another 2020 ever again! This is it! 2019 is in the rear view mirror and 2020 is on the horizon. Do you have hope? Dreams? Ideas? Plans? 2020 is a blank slate!
For the first 22 or so years of my life, I had 20/20 vision. I didn't have to worry about glass, contacts, or blurry vision. I didn't have to spend time cleaning dirty glasses or contacts. I didn't have to search around because I had dropped my contacts, or fear because I stepped on my glasses. It was quite a wonderful life!
One day, as I drove across the bridge connecting Indiana to Kentucky to go to seminary, I feared the days of my wonderful life were over. As I looked at the huge green signs indicating exits, I wasn't able to make out the words until I was so close it was too late for me to take the exit. I kept driving because I couldn't see the sign telling me I needed to turn off.
After missing a couple of exits, I figured I should go to the eye doctor. Sure enough, I needed glasses. Four years of staring at screens all day, I believed, had stolen my perfect vision.
What is 20/20 vision
According to the American Optometric Association, 20/20 vision is the ability to see clearly at 20 feet. They call it vision acuity. In other words, if you have 20/20 vision you can see in 20 feet what you should see in 20 feet. On the other hand, if you have 20/100 vision, you need to be as close as 20 feet to see what a person with normal sight can see at 100 feet.
Having 20/20 vision doesn't mean you have perfect vision because other factors are involved. Nevertheless, with 20/20 vision you are able to see clearly what is in front of you. It was a sad day when I discovered I no longer had 20/20 vision.
As I ponder vision acuity, I am reminded that there are other ways to see. Of course, we see with our eyes but we can also see with our mind, our heart, and our intention.
Before I had glasses, I would miss things...like exits. Since I couldn't see clearly I would miss my turn. I probably needed glasses for a while but didn't want to admit it. I didn't even know how bad my vision was. When I finally got glasses, a new but familiar world opened up to me. I could see again. I could see what I had been missing.
Not 2020 But Now Vision
When our vision is blurry, we miss things. As I reflect on a new year, 2020 no less, I'm reminded of how other things get "blurry." Moments arrive. Moments depart. Each moment flows by like leaves on a river. They come and they float away. In order to notice them, I must be intentional. I must take time to gaze at them, reflect on them, and see them, really see them. Before I know it, those moments, precious and unique, are gone.
Perhaps this year, 2020, can be a reminder to open our eyes. To notice. To be present. To not let these moments pass by unnoticed.
Not only is this the only 2020, but right now is the only now that you have. Each moment is new and unique. You will never read these words for the first time again. You will not experience this moment again.
Perhaps what I'm really after isn't 2020 vision, but the vision of now. What does it look like to have now vision? What is it like to not miss ordinary but amazing moments? What does it mean that this is the only now I will ever have?
Perhaps in 2020 we can be intentionally open our eyes and see, truly see, before the moment passes by.
May your eyes be open! May Jesus be your vision.