August 5, 2011

Perspective

We're all familiar with the "Do you see the glass as 1/2 full or 1/2 empty" question. It's a fancy way of decoding optimism & pessimism. Or some would argue it's more about realism and idealism. Either way, we get to face each day, each crisis, each uncertainty - every moment for that matter - with perspective. We have to decide how we're going to look at things. And one thing that drives me crazy is when I live from day-to-day like my perspective is schizophrenic - like I just can't make up my mind how I'm going to see all that's in front of me. And for me, as a Christ-follower, what it really boils down to is what (or WHO) is controlling me. WHO am I living for? Am I seeing all of this through His eyes...or my own.
Here's a sample of 2 completely different perspectives I can have on my day, my circumstances, and my life in general:

Perspective 1

  • I have a herniated disc in my lower back, a bulging disc in my neck, and scar tissue in my shoulder and if I'm being honest, it really sucks to 38 years (and 364 days) old and be stiff as a board and creak like an old rocking chair.
  • I'm seeing so much of myself in my children...and it drives me nuts!
  • Why does it have to be cloudy? I'm sick of the rain! Where's the sun?!
  • I could go on, but let's not beat a dead horse. (Stupid horse!)
Perspective 2
  • Lord, thank You that even though it feels like my body is falling apart sometimes, I can still walk, talk, sing, hear, see the beauty in front of me, wrestle with my son, dance with my daughter, and wrap my arms around my beautiful wife! Thank You that I can still exercise and take care of myself. 
  • I see so much of me in my children, and at the same time, I see so much of You, Lord. I see You growing them and shaping them into these magnificent and unique individuals - like no other person who's ever walked this earth. Give me strength to teach them, disciple them, and love them.
  • Lord, somewhere in the world someone is begging for rain. And here I stand, watching it fall from the sky. 
  • How could I possibly be any more blessed and privileged than I am right now? You provide, protect, strengthen, comfort, and choose to use me. I'll never fully understand why.
What's your perspective?
Do you need a new view of the same scenery?
Remember: The grass isn't greener; those are probably weeds!

4 comments:

johnc said...

Brian--thanks for posting that. I really appreciate it. I have 4 degenerating discs in my lower back, and some hip problems as well. I work out and ride a bike/trainer regularly, and by Thursday of every week (like clockwork) I have to start popping some pretty strong anti-inflammatories. Today, it suddenly hit me that my back doesn't hurt! I have almost no pain at all today for whatever reason. I thank God for every day I have like this, and I hope I don't take them for granted. When it does hurt, I thank God that I am still in good health, and I can still be active despite some pain. Some day if I can't be active anymore, I hope I will look back at these days and be thankful for the many years of good health He has given me.

Ultimately, I need to remember that all of the pain and suffering in the world, not just mine, is a consequence of sin. Some day (maybe soon!) His kingdom will be in full force on earth and ALL of it will be gone.

Brian Mayfield said...

Amen my friend!

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pompom said...

Very nicely written post.