Seeing things from God’s perspective

I am always surprised at how often followers of Christ pray more about God making their lives comfortable rather than making them people of good character.

As I have heard the prayers at many churches and listened to thousands of individual prayers, clearly, most of what I hear is asking God for physical, relational, or emotional healing for individuals; providing needed resources; opening doors of opportunity; causing others to repent; and the list goes on and on.  These aren’t bad prayers, Philippians 4.6-7 states,

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

So, we do need to pray about everything we perceive as a need.  There is no use praying for spiritual issues if our hearts are really focused on our own needs. God already knows what is going on in our heads, so let’s get honest with him by giving it to him and then allowing the Spirit to bring his transcendent peace into our hearts. As we experience his peace, we then can be open to how God desires to work in and through our lives to shape our character. 

Mary Kay and I recently watched the excellent movie Unsung Hero which is a remarkably true story of the Smallbone family which lost everything in Australia only to come to the United States in the early 1990s and struggle and struggle.

The timing was good for us as we are entering the eighth week of our homeless wandering.  Our problems are so different from the struggles of the Smallbone family as we are not destitute.  However, lessons we’ve learned from scriptures, this movie, and our lives is that God is in our struggles.  More than that, God wants to use our struggles to produce a quality of character within us.  I often say that God is more concerned about our character than our comfort

Living this truth is much more difficult than intellectually simply believing it. Learning to live this truth requires that we walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5.7). So our prayers need to engage God developing our character through our experiences not just asking him to spare us from difficulty.

I am not suggesting we become individuals who seek pain over pleasure.  However, there are some qualities that are only developed through the pain that comes with living in a broken and imperfect world. 

It often takes me a while to process things before I come to see them from God’s perspective and not mine.  As I am first honest in my prayers and journal about what I am feeling, I can often see the cause of these feelings is my insecurities. 

This is why journaling works for me.  I write stuff down and process it as I write it.  Journaling gives me space to see my beliefs, insecurities, thoughts, feelings, and attitudes for what they are.  In this safe space, I can begin to process it.  No one is looking at me expecting a specific result.  I don’t have to come to any conclusions, but rather simply put it down and let it be.  Kind of like laying an egg…I lay an egg by putting stuff down in my journal but have no idea what it will produce or when it will hatch.  It may take hours, days, weeks, months, or even years to process some stuff. 

Eventually, I come to see the situation from a different perspective, God’s perspective.  When I say I process stuff, that is what I mean.  I come to see it from God’s perspective.  In other words, I come to see reality.  Reality isn’t often what we necessarily see, perceive, or believe about something.  Rather as we process through our perceptions, we often come to conclusions that are much closer to true reality.  Which from my perspective is coming to see it from God’s Objective Creator perspective.  In other words, how God as the divine creator sees it.

Usually during this process I must come face to face with my own insecurities which are distorting my perception of reality.  But we will deal with that next week.






4 responses to “Seeing things from God’s perspective”

  1. Dan Holland Avatar
    Dan Holland

    Excellent application of the movie Unsung Hero. Very helpful!

  2. David Brett Avatar
    David Brett

    I will now have to put “Unsung Hero” on my must see list. Thank you for the recommendation. God Bless.

    1. Gregory Wiens Avatar
      Gregory Wiens

      I don’t recommend many movies, but this one was a good one to watch.

  3. […] Lastly, there is a personification of evil in our world identified in scripture as Satan.  We are told he prowls around looking for ways to cause problems in the lives of Christians.  We are told he causes suffering in the lives of those who seek to follow Christ (1 Peter 5.8-9). This last cause of suffering cannot be denied but should not be assumed in all cases, as I wrote about several weeks ago. […]

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