The other day I heard the news about a chap by the name of Colin Farmer, a blind man from Chorley in England.
Just in case you’re not up to date with the news, here’s what happened:
The local police had received reports of someone in the town brandishing a samurai sword, and had sent officers to investigate.
Somehow, one policeman mistook this blind man’s white stick for the samurai sword.
But because Mr Farmer didn’t respond to the police officer’s order to stop, a taser gun was fired, discharging 50,000 volts into his body. The police then handcuffed the blind man’s hands behind his back.
When you have normal sight, this experience would be quite an ordeal.
So it’s not too difficult to imagine what this blind man was thinking; how traumatic it would have been for him. On the television news, Mr Farmer recalled that he thought he was being mugged, and feared for his life.
Have you ever been in complete darkness? What a difference it makes when we’re unable to see.
Once I received a telephone call from a friend asking if I would take him to the local hospital A&E department. During the day John had been trying his hand at arc welding – but without the use of a protective visor. As a result, his eyes became very painful and eyesight started to be affected.
The doctor treated John and taped 2 eyes patches in place. So at this point he was unable to see at all.
John took hold of my shoulder and walked alongside, as I guided him across the floor and through the door. At least, I walked through the door. Unfortunately I led John into the adjacent wall!
It was funny at the time, and thankfully he wasn’t hurt – and his eyesight wasn’t affected long term. But it caused me to think how much I rely on eyesight every day.
…I know what the time is by looking at my watch, or looking up at the clock on the wall.
…I can walk across a busy road in reasonable safely.
…I can drive a car, rather than having to rely on someone else to drive me around (or to tell me the number on the bus).
So sometimes I like to go for a walk and remember how fortunate I am – and thank God for the basic things in life.
– Being thankful for things like the ability to see.
– Having conversations (I can hear and speak, albeit with a strange Wigan accent!). – Smelling the roses.
– Being able to touch and feel things, and experience textures.
– Being able to walk.
– Being able to think and reason.
Very often, we can take our senses and abilities completely for granted. But it’s good to be grateful.
Up until 2008, Colin Farmer was a healthy company director. A stroke resulted in him going blind.
When were you last grateful for the basic things of life?
Don’t wait for a catastrophe in your life to make you aware of what you had but simply took for granted,
Let’s be grateful now. Be thankful now.
And I’ll guarantee this: whatever sort of day you’ve had, having a thankful heart will place all the problems of the day into perspective.
You’ll be affected by it.
You’ll be better for it.
Go on. Try it.