God has always used my oldest daughter to humble myself towards him. One example is one January, when she was a preschooler, she was roaming the house singing “Joy to the World.” When I asked myself why she was singing it, God replied to me, “Isn’t that what you are supposed to always be singing?”
A couple weeks after this, the year that we moved to North Carolina from Maryland, it was actually snowing, and she ran up and bear hugged my leg, pleading “Thank you for the snow!” When I told her that I didn’t make it snow, God did. She replied with “I know! I was saying it to God. He feels the hug because he lives in your heart.”
This time, it was a realization through her perspective.
It was during one of our recent raining for days on end episodes. When it wasn’t raining or cloudy, I was busy inside, not able to see the sunset. Then, one day, it was sunny, and I had taken the girls to dinner as a girls night while daddy was at a bible study. On the way home, we saw this sunset.
I was admiring the colors, and how they just seemed to be painted in the sky. Then, I hear a voice from behind me. It was my oldest daughter. “God is trying to tell us something!” Puzzled, I asked her why she said that. She then proceeded to point out the cross that is in the clouds.
While I was admiring the sunset, she was focused on the cross.
How often are our spiritual lives like the sunset? Do we get so caught up in the colors of the sky (the situations, circumstances, feelings, and other things that occupy our thoughts) that we miss the cross in the middle of it?
Colossians 3:1-2 says “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.”
And Deuteronomy 4:29-30 says “But if from there you seek the LORD your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your soul. When you are in distress and all these things have happened to you, then in later days you will return to the LORD your God and obey him.”
Proverbs 3:5-6 reminds us “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”
Psalm 34: 10b tells us “Those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.” And reminds us to “Seek the LORD and his strength; see his presence continually” in 1 Chronicles 16:11.
Over and over in the Bible, God tells us to seek Him in times of trouble. That He will make our paths straight, and that He will carry us through the circumstances and situations.
We all see our “sunset” and the colors that it brings to our lives. The joy, or hardship; the trials and jubilations. But how many of us take the time to change our perspective on the situation and look past it, and see the cross in the middle of it?
There is a song that I really enjoy that is all about your perspective in life. The chorus goes like this: “Why can’t you see that freedom is sometimes just simply another perspective away. Who could you be if your lens was changed for a moment, would you still be the same.” And the bridge says “Yesterday, you really couldn’t see. By changing your angle a new world would be, revealed to your once blinded eyes, by moving a few degrees.”
My question to you is simply this: Are you looking at the circumstances around you? The color of the sky, the change in weather? Whatever it may be? Or are you seeing through all that, and looking for the cross?
What is your perspective?
Lord, thank you for the beautiful sunsets. And thank you for the situations we are in, whether good or bad, for they all lead to your glory. Thank you for the reminder to look for you, and the cross, in the middle of whatever it is that we are going through. I pray that we all have the ability to shift our perspective a few degrees to be able to see you. Amen.