Today was the annual trip to get our eyes examined. Janet and I try to go together each year because sometimes we get new glasses and we weigh in on frames for one another. It’s become something of a ritual for us and not that I’m excited about any doctor, but normally I have done pretty well at the eye doctor. My earliest recollections of going to get my eyes examined were back in the late fifties.
My Dad had a friend, Dr. Hagen, who was a kindly gentleman who did my eye exams. He was in downtown Chicago and he was the one doctor that Dad took us to – usually Mom pulled appointment duty with our dentist and pediatrician. But Dad was always there for me at Dr. Hagen’s. That was back in the day when you had to have your eyes dilated and then you had to wear sunglasses for hours afterward.
Of course, my brothers and I didn’t own sunglasses so we had to depend on those old cardboard fold up ones that kind of look like the cheap cardboard 3D glasses that were so common a decade or more ago. In fact, we thought, as kids, that it was cool to have sunglasses of any kind, so we held on to the cardboard ones as long as they held together.
My exams always came out fine and I remember Dad always asking about Dr. Hagen’s son, also named Scott, who was born one day before I was born, in Feb., 1953. All the exams went well, that is, until I entered high school. Suddenly, I couldn’t see the front chalkboard in class and kept struggling to be able to answer questions. So I was sent for another exam and, you guessed it, I joined the ranks of eyeglass wearers. I was kind of nerdy anyway, but glasses certainly didn’t help my image. And back then, horn rims were the style. Today, I still have my high school senior picture going up the stairs to my office and there, front and center, are those heavy framed glasses.
Throughout the years I have tried contact lenses numerous times and even wore them for a number of years. Today, I decided to give them another try since the doctor thought my eyes were so healthy. But as soon as I put them in, I could tell that my vision wasn’t quite as clear as I’m used to. I kept them in until a little while ago, but I am not optimistic about being able to wear them. I like to see very clearly and I just couldn’t get there this afternoon.
In the Bible, there was a particular Gospel writer who was also concerned with seeing clearly – he wanted to make sure that whatever he wrote was exactly the truth – no doubt about about it. And you know what? He was a doctor! I guess he was a first century “eye doctor” because he led us down the path of truth and even used the word “eyewitness” when describing what people had seen regarding Jesus. Our word “autopsy” actually comes from 2 Greek words – “auto” (meaning by itself) and “opai” (meaning to see). If you combine them, you get “autopai” (to see for oneself) as in our English word “autopsy.” It is also similar to the word eyewitness – to see for oneself… to be there personally.
Our verses for tonight are the opening verses of Dr. Luke’s Gospel – making sure that people knew the certainty of the things that were being recorded. I have taken the liverty of “bolding” all the words that affirm the truth of Luke’s opening. From the first chapter of Luke, 1:1-4 we are told, “Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as they were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word. Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.”
That’s quite an affirmation of the truth about Christ, don’t you think? Luke wanted to make sure that the people knew that his writing was complete – not lacking anything, and remember that Luke was himself an eyewitness to some of these miracles. My encouragement this evening is that you will keep your eyes open to see the truth and that will also affirm the certainty of the things that you have been taught. My prayer is that you will always walk in the light and have perfect vision when it comes to seeing the Savior and following the path that He has set for you. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…