The gift of sight is one of the most incredible miracles of the human body. Being able to see the world around us allows us to perceived, understand and appreciate so much of God’s creation. If you ever want to understand just how important our eyesight is, try spending a few days completely blindfolded and experience the black world of someone who is blind.
In the summer between my 7th and 8th grade years, my family vacation took us on a road trip along the central and northern California coast. We saw the giant redwoods, Yosemite National Park and many of the other beautiful sights of the area. We stopped to spend a day at Big Sur. My dad and I were body surfing and enjoying the sun and waves, until one wave hit me hard and rolled me underwater. I automatically opened my eyes to see were I was and which way was up. When I did, I got sand in both eyes and ended up with multiple scratches on the lenses of both eyes. My parents took me to a local emergency room where I was treated and subsequently spent the next three days sightseeing with patches on both eyes. I was totally blind for that short period and it was an experience I will never forget. Since that time, I have never taken my eyesight for granted.
Over the years, I have had to have cataract surgery in both eyes as the lenses in my eyes clouded over and made my vision blurry. Eye doctors were able to surgically remove the clouded lenses and replace them with clear artificial ones. One thing I noticed right away is that blues were bluer and whites were whiter with the new clear lenses. I learned that the natural lenses in our eyes can get a slight yellowish tint as you grow older and many people do not realize how that affects our perception of colors.
A few years after having cataracts, the retina detach in one of my eyes and only through the wonders of modern medicine were the doctors able to surgically reattach it and preserve my vision. Three years later, the retina in the other eye detached and was surgically repaired.
Had I live 50 years earlier and had the cataracts and retina detachments, I would most likely be partially or totally blind today. Every morning when I open my eyes and see the world around me, I thank God for my vision and the modern medical procedures that were used to repair and restore it.
But have you ever taken time to look at your eyes and how they work to enable you to see? The human eye is a marvel of design, much like a video camera but far more advanced and versatile.
Like some cameras the eye is auto-focusing. To do this, man-made cameras have to move the whole lens forward or backward to just the right distance to get a focused image. Unlike a camera that has to move the lens, our eye changes the shape of its lens using special muscles that automatically adjust the lens to just the thickness for a sharp focus.
Like a camera, the eye bends incoming light and creates an image inside the eye. But unlike cameras, the eye also sharpens the image along the edges.
If you have a magnifying glass, hold it up and look at a distant object. Then move it further or closer until you can see the object clearly. When you see the object come into focus you will noticed that it is upside down and backwards. That’s because the lens of the magnifying glass bends the light and reveres the image. A camera lens does the same thing, but modern cameras use mirrors and technology to convert the image to right side up and normal.
The lens in your eye also reverses the image, but unlike a camera there is no mirror to correct the image. God designed our brains to automatically make that adjustment when it receives the visual images from the eye. No one knows how it does this, but it does.
Similar to some cameras the eye automatically adjusts to brightness, so we can see day or night. In fact, in dark conditions, the eye increases its sensitivity to light up to 100,000 times. Cameras use an aperture or some kind of device that opens wide in the dark and gets smaller in brighter light. Likewise, the pupils in our eyes dilate wide open in the dark and narrow down to a small opening in bright light.
Unlike a camera, we have a second mechanism that helps us to control the brightness that reaches our eyes. Step out into the bright sunlight and not only will your pupils get real small, but you will find the muscles in your face also work to partially close your eyelids. We call that squinting. In the dark, the muscles pull the eyelids wide open to help allow more light into our eyes.
Eyes are much more sophisticated than cameras. They convert the light image into electro-chemical signals which are sent immediately to the brain that processes the images and makes necessary adjustments.
Many other aspects of the eye surpass anything humans can design. Eyes are self-cleaning, self-lubricating, and self-repairing.
When the lenses of my eyes got scratched, they healed and the scratches disappeared. If you scratch the lens of a camera, the only way to repair it is to replace that part of the lens. Then when I had the surgeries to repair the detached retinas, I witnessed part of the eye’s amazing ability to repair itself. In order to reattach the retina, the eye surgeon had to go inside the eye. Part of the procedure was to remove all of the fluid from the inside of the eye. To my surprise, they did not replace any of the fluid. They filled the eye with air and then sealed the incision. Over the next 2 weeks, the eye slowly replaced the missing fluid. During that time, I realized that the fluid is a vital part of the eye’s ability to focus. Where there was no fluid, everything was blurry. As the fluid filled, I could actually see the fluid as a clear area of focus.
Even more marvelous, eyes are built automatically in the womb. No camera can repair or build itself!
Evidence of design appears in all types of animals. Each eye seems specially designed for its environment, whether an eagle in flight or a fish in the sea.
For example, owls have a special surface in the back of their eye which reflects light back through the retina. It helps them to see better in the dark.
Flies have another design, a compound eye which helps them to detect the slightest motion.
Such diverse, yet exquisitely designed eyes show the handiwork of our Lord and remind me of Proverbs 20:12:
The hearing ear and the seeing eye, the LORD has made them both.
by Tedd and Margy Tripp
From interaction with their peers to the instruction and correction that they receive at home, children interpret their experience from a worldview that seeks to answer their fundamental questions: Who am I? What do I exist for? Where can I find joy?
As parents, we need to be providing our children with a consistent, persuasive, and biblical framework for understanding the world God has made and their place in it. The instruction that we provide for them should not only inform their mind; it should be directed towards persuading their hearts of the wisdom and truthfulness of Gods ways. We must impress truth on our children’s hearts, not to control or manage them, but to point them to the greatest joy and happiness that they can experiencedelighting in God and the goodness of his ways.
Instructing a Childs Heart is an essential follow-up to Tedd Tripp’s previous bestseller, Shepherding a Childs Heart. This book gives practical instruction aimed at helping parents instruct their children in ways that will persuade them of God’s wisdom. Instead of focusing solely on changing a child’s behavior, the authors help us to look at the heart of the child. Point your child toward the happiness they will find from doing things God’s way!
“This book brings the Bible into the parents’ lives in a fresh way. It is one thing to say that parents must use the Bible for parenting. It is another thing to show how that is actually done. Instructing a Child’s Heart provides practical, real life instruction on how to do just that.” John Younts (Author of Everyday Talk)
“Tedd and Margy Tripps Instructing a Childs Heart is a biblical and practical sequel to Shepherding a Childs Heart.” Marvin Olasky (Editor-in-Chief, WORLD Magazine)