Faith is taking the first step, even when you don't see the whole staircase.
A month or two ago I met a wonderful woman on a flight coming home from one of my trips to Texas. We were immediately drawn to one another, thanks to the charm and charisma of my furry friend and companion Vaughn. The other day she called telling me how she woke up thinking about all the ways to end her life. She was not suicidal, or so she had said, but was just feeling like life was too much to deal with and would welcome death and moving on as it were. This troubled me, and I assured her she was not alone, and that I could See how she was feeling and that there was so much out there to be grateful for and to live for.
Later that night, I awoke just before 1 a.m. and caught Idina Menzel singing her song "I See You" on the CNN Hero Awards. I immediately found myself thinking about this woman I met, and knew that I was supposed to share this powerful and moving song with her. So I sent it to her and said that I knew she needed to hear these words and that, in spite of my being blind, “I most certainly See You and this song proves it”. I assured her that I would take her hand and help her see the staircase of faith, faith in ourselves, and faith in the simple truth, that none of us are truly alone.
Helen Keller once said, "The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no Vision”. With my new found Vision, I can still see others as they are, in their moments of despair as well as their elation. This tells me that being physically blind does not keep me from "seeing" people. I contend that being intentionally blind to life, and not using your sight to see is far worse than being plain old blind like me. Helen had a point in that regard that is for sure. What we all need to do, daily, is to stop and make time to see all the wonders of the world around us, especially the people standing in front of us who need to be seen. Take the time to hold them in your gaze and see them intentionally making every effort to not just look at them or past them.
That being said, as I navigate my 11th year of being blind, and I look back at all I have learned and all the gifts that came to me since losing my eye sight, but not my Vision, I have come to a belief, that seeing is not believing, but just the opposite. Believing is Seeing.
When we all of us are asked to search our spiritual centers and look to our higher power for all things possible. When we pray to God, or Allah or Yahweh we are expected to just Believe? Believe in the forces of nature, in the power of the Universe, in the omnipotent power of God, or in just about anything we cannot touch as a tangible, verifiable thing. Believing requires our not "seeing", but in fact requires our having faith with our eyes closed as it were. We are expected to know with all our faith that God exists, that our higher power is there no matter what and that we can count on God and on God’s love for each of us. That "I See You" is something called blind faith.
Then when we look for that one life partner, that spouse or friend to spend the rest of our lives with. That one person who should and would love us unconditionally, for better or for worse, richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part. We are always wanting that person to be the one person outside of God we can trust with our eyes closed, knowing that no matter what, come hell or high waters, they have our back. That "I See You" is called blind trust.
Then we have our societal concepts of Justice. True Justice and Truth can only be heard, felt, and known through using all our other senses, allowing our inner Vision to guide us, blindly as it were. Lady Justice wears a blindfold reinforcing that the truth cannot be seen, and that Believing is Seeing. The presence of the blindfold is the foundation upon which our legal systems have been built and we expect Justice to be doled out blindly and fairly, devoid of attributes to our race, gender, economic ability, orientation, ability or religion. In this way Justice is telling you "I See You" and this is called blind justice.
So when we send out prayers of healing to people with any number of challenging or life threatening illnesses, tell them "I see you". Or when we ask 3 friends to forward a hotline number instead of our own number to support our brothers and sisters struggling in the darkness and unable to see the light of life's journey, tell them "I see you". When we are on the phone with someone struggling or speaking to them about their despair hug them and tell them "I See You". Let them know they are not alone. Let them know that the great "I Am" Sees them too and that, no matter what, they are not alone. Let people know that we are all One in this great divinely powerful universe and simply tell them, "I See You"!
I See You by Idina Menzel: