We’ve all had moments when we wonder, sometimes in exasperation and sometimes in elation, “What on earth is going on?”
It’s not unusual for those moments to be seasons. Seasons of pain, suffering, heartache, loneliness, frustration, fear, desperation, depression, poverty, infidelity, adultery, betrayal or death that take their toll on our sense of purpose and being.
When we are swept up in the moment, living only for today, or to get through today, we often grow weary and lose heart. We end up feeling defeated even before the battle begins. The drudgery of today becomes more than we want to endure. Getting out of bed is the hardest part of the day.
Seeing beyond those moments – let alone above them – can nearly be impossible. However, if we are to survive the moments when we question “what on earth is going on?” we must learn to stop looking at things entirely from an earthly vantage point and choose to view them from a heavenly perspective.
Every moment of our lives has a heavenly purpose; one that we must strive to see, and that is not easy.
I was thinking about this the other day when I visited a friend. She lived in a single-story house in northern Illinois when she bought this table. It is a pretty table, and I enjoyed looking at it in her house in Illinois many times.
However, she recently moved into a two-story house in sunny Texas and declared that this table was meant to be viewed from above. And it is!
Her pretty table transforms into a stunning piece of copper artwork when viewed from above; from a new and higher perspective.
It’s much the same with our lives; every moment is transformed into something special and supernatural when we view it from above. Therefore we must strive to see every moment of our lives from above: every moment. Only then do we have any hope of understanding what God is doing in, and through, our lives. It isn’t easy looking at our lives from above.
Think about the hardest moment you’ve had lately…
- When frustration got the best of you and you yelled at your child, not as discipline, but as an outlet for your anger.
- When you gave in to temptation.
- When you told the same lie again… and again.
- When you lost your job.
- When the diagnosis came back positive.
Is there any beauty to be found in any of these? Not from our perspective, there isn’t. That’s why we must learn to look at things from above. To look from above means that we try to see things from God’s perspective, and to do that we must remember who God is.
God is just; he always does what is good and right. God protects us in his mercy and great love. God is all-powerful; he can accomplish anything he chooses. God is majestic; he rules the universe. God is a Good Father who always gives what is best to his children.
God sees beyond the moment, and even beyond history itself, therefore he knows what is best for us today and in the future. God is able to redeem the moments and opportunities where we have failed miserably and use them to sanctify us and bring us to maturity in our faith.
When we understand that God is always at work in our lives – in every moment of our lives – and that he works for our good – we can trust that from a heavenly perspective, there is beauty in every moment.
Oh, that doesn’t mean that our ugliness, our hatred, our anger, our misplaced venomous tantrums are beautiful. They are not. We have very ugly sides to our personalities. But it does mean that God is at work refining us and redeeming our failures and our heartaches. We can know with certainty that when we arrive in heaven, and look back on our lives with heavenly understanding, everything will make beautiful sense.
My friend’s table is pretty, even when not viewed from above, much like many of our moments in life. There are lovely seasons when happiness, love, relationships, beauty, satisfaction, encouragement, wealth, health, perseverance, learning, and plenty sustain us.
We must try to see these moments from above also. If we don’t, and if we focus on the blessing rather than the God who allows the blessing, it is easy to develop a demented view of God where God becomes little more than a benevolent Grandpa handing out candy. Moreover, when the candy stops, so does our desire to live for him.
We must, as Jesus did, strive to see earthly things from above. That is the way to not grow weary and lose heart…
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (Hebrews 12:1-3 NIV)
What moment or season of life are you in today? Are you struggling to make sense of it? Will you strive to see your circumstances from above? Will you choose to view your difficult situation through the grid of the character of God; the God who loves you?