I Lift My Eyes

I love a new start, a new year, a new decade. However, my excitement for 2020 crashed on 12/31/2019. I suddenly lost the central vision in my right eye, and I had a realistic risk of blindness. I wanted this to go away so badly. I wanted to wake up and have my normal back. Both physically and emotionally, I wanted to stop seeing darkness everywhere I looked.

If you can’t see your way out of a difficult situation today, I want to encourage you with a few thoughts I learned in the journey.

When it feels like a rug has been pulled out from under you, look up.

I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.

– Psalm 121:1-2 ESV

It helped me to pull my focus away from distractions and to focus on the Lord. For a few days, I delegated some responsibilities, accepted some help, and didn’t pick up any battles that were not mine. (This included distancing from news media.)

Realize who is with you in the dark.

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

– Isaiah 41:10 ESV

It was most difficult for me at night. My mind filled with scenarios and what-ifs. A friend sent me a few worship songs, and as I listened, my soul found peace. The presence of the Lord filled my heart, and my body relaxed into sleep.

Ask the Lord to work in you during the trial.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

– Romans 8:28 NIV

God is able to work in all things, even unbelievable hardship. Eventually the healing of His presence in the hardship became so evident, and I knew I could trust Him to work good in me even if I didn’t see my circumstance change.

As you are strengthened, pray for others.

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

–James 5:16 ESV

As the Lord strengthened me, I learned of other friends facing hard times, and we began to pray and encourage each other. It was beautiful to see God work in our hearts as we put our faith in Christ alone.

I am thankful to say that my vision was restored with minimal damage. I’m even more thankful that God was with me in the dark.

I pray that you will be able to lift Your eyes, to see the Lord in the hardships you may be facing. I pray that you will know that God is with you and working in you. I pray that you will see how God will work your situation for good, and I pray that you will be strengthened to be a light as others face hardships.

– Crystal Villalobos-Lewis, Chi Alpha Alumna of Loyola University New Orleans

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