Tuesday, June 25, 2013


When I think of the word "perspectives," it's often paired with "course," as in a college course. Or a course like this one, that someday my friend and I would love to take. But this past month, I feel as if my life has been showing me perspective in its own way, without the use of a college classroom or textbook.

One example is a recent 4-day mission trip to downtown Atlanta with middle schoolers from my church. Seeing Christ through their eyes as we served "the least of these" together was absolutely humbling and incredibly encouraging.

Walking into a massive room that sleeps over 400 homeless men...perspective.

24 of us cleaning every single bed...perspective.

Observing swarms of refugee mothers impulsively grabbing freely given clothes so their child won't be naked...perspective.

Our students standing - of their own free will - on one of the darkest, busiest intersections in Atlanta, praying over the people, the city, while joyously holding signs of who God is to them...perspective.

I was reminded of perspective again this past Saturday as my roommate and I caught a few minutes of "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids" on TV. Every person born in the late 70's or early 80's remembers this classic. We've all wondered what it would be like to fall into a flower and have pollen cling to us like snow, to ride an ant guided buy a massive chunk of cookie attached to a stick, or to swim in a bowl of Cheerios and milk, fearful of being eaten by your dad.

What would it be like to be that minuscule? That trivial? This movie popped in my head a couple weeks ago on a hiking trail. As I walked, I wondered how many bugs existed in this park alone. How many leaves shook when the wind blew? How many people had walked this path before, and yet I was the only one there in that moment? I often think thoughts like this when I'm in nature. Maybe that's why it's my favorite spiritual getaway. It offers perspective easily missed in our fast-paced society of power and control. It all comes to a dead halt in this passage:

2 Corinthians 4: 6, NASB

For God, who said, "Light shall shine out of darkness," is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

Did you get that? This is the God who said "Let there be light"...and there was light. That One. The Creator of the Universe, the One who formed the waters and the earth...

I think of this every time I run at this park. How couldn't you with a view like this?

This very same God is the One who shines in my heart. Wow, is that ever perspective.

And how about the concept of time? If the collision of my timing with God's doesn't put me in my place, I don't know what does. This past week I re-listened to KQ's message on the work of waiting from last November. I'm experiencing this now in very real ways. Peter explains it this way:

But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

KQ said, "God is always working. Therefore, you can live with patient trust...Waiting time isn't wasted time, it's working time. God is doing a work in you."

He also quoted Ben Patterson in saying, "The work God wants to do in us while we wait is at least as important as what we're waiting for."

Now that's, mmm-mm, good.

How have you experienced perspective in your own life? Are you waiting for things that require an increased dose of faith, trust, or hope? Or are you simply in a place of basking in the truth of the God of the Universe shining in your heart?