For the past three decades, Miikka Terho's world has been shrinking. At age 16, he developed a condition that began to kill off the retinal cells of his eyes, slowly robbing him of his sense of sight. Now, 30 years later, Miikka's eyes just barely allow him to distinguish the difference between night and day.
His condition is called retinitis pigmentosa. Its damage is irreversible and unstoppable—but, it turns out, not impassable.
In a recent study, Miikka and others underwent surgery to receive an optical implant—one that enabled the legally blind man to "read letters, tell the time and identify a cup and saucer on a table" ("Vision Chip Restores Sight to Blind Man," Guardian.co.uk). It's the kind of story you'd half-expect to be reading about in a science-fiction novel, and yet, here it is. This is happening. The blind are being given sight.
Incredible as such an achievement is, it still has some inherent flaws. Subjects were only able to see in black and white (and even then, without much in the way of clarity), and the implant's operation was dependent on a rechargeable battery pack. Those behind the technology are hopeful that future advancements will improve the quality of vision afforded by the implant—and, in all likelihood, they will.
Better sight coming
What Miikka and others like him have been given is amazing. To go from near-total blindness to having any sort of sight perception at all is nothing to scoff at—but there's something far greater awaiting the blind of this world, and it doesn't depend on scientific advances.
When Jesus Christ left the earth to return to His Father's right hand, He made a promise to return one day—and not on His own, but with His saints, to establish a Kingdom that will span the entire world. Under His reign, we are promised that "the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then the lame shall leap like a deer, and the tongue of the dumb sing" (Isaiah 35:5-6).
The physical maladies that plague so many will be removed forever—and more than that, eventually, "God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away" (Revelation 21:4).
See this now
What's coming is a day when people like Miikka Terho, along with every member of the human race, will be made whole and given a chance to know the God who loves them. Want to know more?