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Shifting Your Perspective

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In the 1990’s, there were these cool stores in the mall that had holographic pictures for sale. I used to go in that store all the time because I was so fascinated by how real the pictures looked and how you could shift your perspective and they would change or move. Those pictures were always crazy expensive, but they sold a more affordable option. They were called stereograms (see above picture). These pictures looked like a strange pattern with different lines of colors going across it. If you shifted your perspective and adjusted how you looked at it, a 3D image would pop out that was hidden inside the crazy patterns. I had to train my brain and my eyes how to see the pictures, and once I did, I could shift between seeing the pattern and the picture.

Job was a man who went through some pretty rough circumstances. We all know that when he lost everything, he fell down and worshipped (Job 1:20). However, the longer he sat there in his grief, the more his perspective shifted. His friends came to console him, but after a while began to accuse him of sinning. Job’s attitude shifted from worship to defense to pride and arrogance. He went from defending himself to his friends to calling on God to come accuse him face to face. God did just that and confronted him. In Job 40:3-5, he responded to God, “I’m speechless, in awe—words fail me. I should never have opened my mouth! I’ve talked too much, way too much. I’m ready to shut up and listen” (MSG). He had to get quiet long enough to see things from God’s perspective.

Colossians 3:2 says, “Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.” We each need a perspective change from time to time. We get so busy looking at things through our own lens, the lens of the news we watch or the lens of the people around us. When that happens, we can get mad at people, organizations, the world and even God. We need to take time to clear our minds and fill it with the Word of God so we can shift our perspective to see things from His perspective. We need to quit looking around at the mess and look up to the Prince of Peace. Instead of arguing with people, we need to shut up and listen to what God is saying. His perspective will change how we respond to the things going on around us and to us. His perspective is truly the one that matters. Let’s focus on that today instead how we normally look at things and see what a difference that makes.

If you shift your perspective and how you see it, the above picture has a shark in it.

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Worship In The Valley

Two of the biggest lies we hear when we’re going through a difficult time is that no one else understands and that God doesn’t care. I remember hearing both and believing them. The first one tries to get you on a technicality because there is no one else with your exact situation. I’ve found that while our situations may be unique, the pain and the process we go through is very similar. While someone may not be able to fully understand my exact situation, they can identify with the pain. That leads us to the second lie that God doesn’t care. The lie wants you to think that if God cared, you wouldn’t be going through so much. The truth is that even though you walk through the valley of the shadow of death, He’s there with you to guide you and comfort you. He makes all things work together for our good.

I don’t know anyone who went through as much as Paul or Job. Job lost everything including his wealth, his kids and property. He still was able to worship God in that moment. In Job 2:9, when his wife told him to curse God and die, he responded, “Shall we accept good from God and not the trouble?” (NIV) When Paul was thrown in prison with Silas after having been beat, he invited God’s presence into the deepest, darkest part of that prison in the middle of the night by singing praises. When both of these men felt abandoned by people and God, they worshipped knowing that God dwells in the praises of His people. They held to the truth that God cares for us no matter how bad things may seem.

Psalm 31:7 says, “I will be glad and rejoice in your unfailing love, for you have seen my troubles, and you care about the anguish of my soul” (NLT). In the darkest nights of my life, the most painful times, I turned on praise and worship music to help me worship when I didn’t feel it. God is worthy of our praise no matter what it is we’re going through. He sees the anguish in our soul and He cares deeply for us. He knows that the pain, the hurt, the sadness and the darkness will only last for a little while. He never leaves us in those times though He may feel far away. He’s there leading us into a greater joy and life that often goes through the darkest valley. Don’t listen to the lies and despair. Listen to the truth and worship.

Photo by Jametlene Reskp on Unsplash

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