With My Own Eyes

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“With My Own Eyes,” Ensign, Aug. 1990, 25

With My Own Eyes

I can see only 10 percent of what is around me—mostly objects that are big and that move slowly.

But that changed for a few moments one afternoon.

No one seemed to be around as I sat on a shady hill. The grass beneath me covered the earth like a green carpet, and I savored the smell of nearby roses. I knelt to touch each flower, thankful that I could see a small part of God’s lovely world.

Suddenly, I sensed movement close to me. Then I heard a chirp about a foot away. It must be a bird, I thought, wishing I could see it. I had never seen a real bird, just pictures of them in books. But I never would: they were so small, and they flew so swiftly.

My pulse quickened as I caught a glimpse of something brown. I strained my eyes until I could tell it was a bird. I watched as the bird spread its wings majestically before me. I held my breath, not wanting to scare it away. It lingered briefly. As it disappeared into the blue sky, I wept freely. I had seen something so exquisite that I wanted to see more.

But soon another thought passed through my mind. If I could fully see, I might not value every priceless image as I now did. I might not see inner beauty as easily, or have the compassion I had learned from my own suffering. It was God’s gentle reminder of his will for me. I could serve him best as I was.

I dried my eyes. “Thank you, Lord,” I prayed, “for letting me see a bird.”

Illustrated by Richard Hull