The other morning, I awoke to slightly blurred vision in my right eye accompanied with an uncomfortable sensation. In the past, this was nearly always due to mucus or an entrapped eyelash under my contact lens. But after removing and rinsing the contacts, the blurred vision and irritation remained. Hopeful this episode would pass, I arrived at my office about an hour later and proceeded to view my microscope slides. To my horror, I could not focus.
I texted my optometrist, a dear brother in Jesus Christ, and informed him of my plight. He graciously agreed to see me the next morning. In the meantime, I discarded my contact lenses and wore my glasses. This mitigated some of the discomfort but my vision was still slightly blurred. When I saw my optometrist the next morning, he quickly diagnosed my condition.
“Your corneas are swollen. I’m surprised you can see as well as you do.”
“Wow! What causes this?”
“Could be several reasons…irritation from contacts, injury. Let’s have you not wear your contact lenses and return in two weeks to see if your vision improves.”
“Sounds good! Hope it isn’t anything serious!”
My optometrist smiled and said, “I see this with people our age. They wear contacts for years and then when they get older, there are changes to their bodies. Their eyes may get drier and the contacts are more irritating. It is more common in women, especially when they enter menopause.”
My eyes lit up. “Seriously? I must be going through male menopause. It all makes sense. My moodiness, my fatigue, my crankiness! That’s the explanation!”
My optometrist let a thoughtful pause go by, cracked a wry smile over my epiphany, and followed with a diplomatic reply. “I think you would know more about that kind of thing!”
The medical community is divided over the merit and validity of this diagnosis. Certainly there are physiological changes that afflict all us when we age and may lead to different and aberrant behaviors, but growing old does not explain these same behaviors I have perpetrated upon others for my entire life. I was cowering behind a dubious diagnosis, attempting to excuse my bad behaviors. I know my true diagnosis.
I am a sinner.
Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.
Romans 7:24-25 (ESV)
As a physician, I can convince myself of the veracity of biological and genetic explanations for my sins and bad behavior. But I am lying to myself and to God. My selfishness and arrogance is rooted in a much deeper problem than physiological changes. My relationship with God is broken by sin. There is only one treatment and one cure. I must confess and repent of my sins and accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.
That’s the explanation! Jesus Christ!
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.