When I was a little kid at vacation bible school one summer, I was told to color a cluster of grapes and the leaves. I was coloring when the teacher said, Scott, the grapes are supposed to be purple and the leaves green. I said, that is what I did. The teacher said, no your grapes are blue and your leaves are brown. I was confused but that was my first introduction to the reality of my color blindness. Later, I was employed right out of high school in an office supply place where I pulled orders to ship. One day the boss came in and said, Ranck, are you color blind or something? He said, you are shipping out too many things that are the wrong color. They gave me a color blind test and then transferred me to another department. This week, I bought a pair of Enchroma glasses which allow a color blind person to see color more accurately. Here are three things I’ve discovered about my color blindness.
- Being Color Blind is Like Living in a Faded Out World! Whenever someone hears a person is color blind, they start pointing to things and saying, what color is this? I could always see bright colors like blue, red, yellow and orange. I often couldn’t distinguish red from green, blue from purple and mostly colors that are the same shade all looked alike to me. I have a terrible time with pastels. When I put on the Enchroma glasses the first thing I noticed was a neighbor’s bush had multiple shades of green leaves. It always looked like a dull clump of faded green to me. Now it looks alive with multiple shades of a more vibrant green. I noticed even the colors I thought I was seeing before were far more vibrant. The paint on cars really appears vibrant. Especially, the blue and red cars. I notice advertising signs at stores are more vibrant colors. I can distinguish different colors even when they are the same shade. Taking a walk, the trees look more varied in colors and they don’t all just look like a blob of the same faded out color.
- I Will Need To Learn What Colors Are What! Because all I’ve ever known is what I saw, now that I can see more diversity, shades and nuances of color, I will need to be reeducated on what color I’m actually seeing because I don’t know. I saw a store, I always thought was painted green, but now see it is burgundy! It is going to be fun learning what I’ve not been able to distinguish in the colorful world we live in. It will be like back to kindergarten for me to learn what the colors are. I’m thinking, even when I’m not wearing the glasses I will be more aware of what is really there.
- There Are Going To Be Many “Firsts” To Experience! I had to be to work early yesterday for a meeting and on the ride to the office, I experienced my first sunrise wearing the glasses. With them off, the sky looked like a washed out pale blue, with the bright sun coming up. With the glasses on, the sky was alive with various shades of pink and red streaming out in both directions from the sun. I’ve seen many what appeared to be beautiful sunsets, but, I’m thinking I’ve not seen anything yet! Each day will be an adventure of seeing and experiencing things for the first time. It is exciting.
There is a spiritual lesson in all this to me. The Bible teaches that until we come to know Jesus, we are spiritually blind. There are realms, shades, and nuances to life we just can’t see and comprehend. Scripture teaches the enemy works very hard to keep us blind, lest the light of the Gospel shine into us and we become Christ followers. What adventures await for those who have their seeing corrected. Each day of life becomes an adventure, knowing, loving and understanding God and his world.