Consistently placing God in the center of our lives can suddenly provide perspective. If you actively seek it, there is something to be found. Perspective is not just for the present—it can be applied in our future and past as well.
Here at the All Nations office, we often talk about a test called Strengths Finder. It’s a test widely used in corporations and organizations alike, for the purpose of highlighting an individual’s top five unique combination of talents, knowledge and skills. It shows how each person functions in their daily lives, and also how they get things done.
My top strength is empathy, the ability to feel and understand another person’s perspective, even if I don’t necessarily agree. The word perspective is even in the description, so it’s a concept that definitely occupies my mind. Even though this is true, I still have to work at seeing things differently, especially in my own life.
Let me ask you to look to your past. Think back to one of the hardest seasons you’ve been through. Put yourself in the middle of that season.
- What were your thoughts and actions?
- How did you treat people?
- How did you treat yourself?
- Was God there in spite of it all?
Think of the mercies He gave you in that season, even the small ones. Think really hard. It’s funny how sometimes it’s easier to remember heart-wrenching lows and not over-the-moon highs during those hard times. Throughout seasons there is a transformation of the heart—whether it happens in the moment, many years later, or both.
I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them (Isaiah 42:16).
To take this action a step further, it’s important to write this recall of memories down and how you see it differently. Writing solidifies those memories. They don’t only exist in your memory anymore, they exist in a tangible place where you can read back on things forgotten.
Many times, it can be difficult to look back on seasons where things weren’t what we wanted them to be. It’s hard to think about those times and see the person you were because it may not have been pretty. Being intentional about perspective of self allows humility and tenderness to enter your heart. When you allow God to work within you this way, it sets the course for how you perceive people, events and situations in the future.
God is bigger than anything and everything, yet He knows you so personally that He gives you exactly what you need during your lowest moments, even if you don’t see it for years to come. Reflecting on how God was in your past will help you grow in recognizing that God is in everything you do, big and small.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11).