This is day thirteen of twenty-one days of posts between January 10th and January 30th of 2021. Hello again to those who read previous days, and hello to those of you who may have stumbled across this post “out of order”. You should go back and read from Day 1, for a few reasons. It explains why I am doing this. It is the first one, and I may make reference to something in it in this post or a later one. It also has a list with each day’s post (once they are available) and you can jump to whatever topic you are interested in. Thanks for reading!
I realized as I was about to start writing this post that I had neglected to publish my post from yesterday. It was waiting for me, complete, edited and ready to go, but I failed to push the button. It was late when I finished it, so I guess that is why I missed that last step. Oh, well. It is published now and through the magic of WordPress time travel, it shows as being posted yesterday. Cool.
I might have been far more disturbed about that failure in times past, especially when I have been attempting daily posts, but this time-nah, it’s OK, no one lost anything from it not being published. It’s a good perspective to have.
We all need perspective. Whether it is on our failures, other people’s failures, our successes or other people’s successes, or something else, perspective can temper our response to events, to people, to life in general. Where do we get this perspective? This ability to respond, not react, to understand, not condemn, to be open, not closed. Some argue it comes from life experiences, but I believe that is just part of the story. Proper perspective comes from having equilibrium, from dwelling in peace, and from a sense of balance. Where does this come from?
I believe it comes straight from God. I believe that there is no other place to get this proper perspective, this ability to look at the wreck of our day, sometimes, and say “It is well”. How can we do this? It comes from knowing that this life is not the most important thing. It comes from realizing that the eternal is more significant than this temporal existence. I’ll admit, that is hard to do. We are reminded over and over in the Bible that this is the case, that suffering here in this life is temporary and expected, and we really shouldn’t freak out over it.
But…if you are like me, you like comfort. You don’t like conflict. You certainly don’t like circumstances putting you in a place where you don’t have enough money to pay the bills, or buy food, or get to work. You don’t like the idea of job uncertainty, or failing health. If you are really like me, you dislike change of any kind, to some degree. The familiar is comfortable, even if it is challenging. Change is…uncomfortable. Disaster is…catastrophic.
But we are told repeatedly in the Bible that in this life, there will be trouble. John 16:33 is Jesus speaking to his disciples, telling them this very thing:
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Jesus is telling them, straight up, that they are all destined for trouble, but to meet it head on and realize that He has overcome the world. If you are a disciple of Christ, this applies to you also, especially in these times. Standing for what is right is quickly condemned by the world, labeled as evil, hateful, and not welcome in society. However, this is not new. We just have so many ways to find out what is going on in our world now, and delivery of this information doesn’t take days or weeks as it used to, but milliseconds. There have always been people who prefer to destroy, plunder, hate, and propagate evil and lies. They are just more visible now in our modern technological society.
Which leads us back to perspective. We have to see events and people as God sees them. Broken and expected. People…we are broken by sin. Nothing happens that God did not know about. He isn’t surprise by the chaos in our world. He wants us to push back against it, with love and understanding. It won’t be easy, but that is the call.
Lord help me to have perspective on the events and people in my life. Help me to love my enemies, help my friends, be kind to everyone, and realize that no matter what happens, You are in control.