2017 Perspective Changes

In this new year, Lord, change my perspective so I see you, me, and life as you intended and not as I've assumed.In Jesus' name,Amen

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2017 Word for the Year…What happened?

Last year this time, I discovered “Word for the year.” I’d never heard such a thing, and found it intriguing. After accidentally stumbling upon blog posts from those accustomed to choosing a word, I began to wonder if God was trying to tell me something. In praying on what He’d have me do, I felt to focus on “Perspective” during 2017.

Why ‘Perspective?’

When life gets hard, I don’t spend a lot of time asking ‘why,’ but I sometimes find myself acting as though God doesn’t care by shying away and scrambling for my own comfort. Life isn’t easy, and there are still many struggles with two of our sons. At first I didn’t know why God chose “Perspective” as my word, but later realized God wanted me to perceive Him, and ultimately myself within suffering, from a clearer perspective.

 

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Embarking on an Adventure…In a Garden…..

As I approached the new year, I felt led to re-read the creation from Genesis one through three. Since creation is the place suffering began, I prayed to see it all from His perspective rather than my own. Upon ‘entering’ His newly made garden, I marveled at all God called “good” –He left nothing out. His new world was beautiful, amazing and safe.

I felt a twinge of jealousy as I ‘observed’ Adam and God walking together in the cool of the day. I allowed my mind to imagine all they must have discussed as Adam navigated his new world and new role as ‘governor’ of God’s kingdom, chuckling at the thought of Adam asking, “What would you name this creature with the long neck, spotted back, and black eyes with long lashes?” With awe I envisioned the God of the universe bringing each animal to Adam, and gleefully anticipating the name he’d choose. I still smile at imagining Adam’s bewilderment of the intricately made wo-man, “What does she mean when she says….?” What must these relationships have looked like in such purity and innocence? No barriers. No shame. It brought God delight to bless His creation well.

As Creator and Sustainer, God deserved allegiance, but rather than demand He offered His lavish best for all who would serve Him willingly. God longed for relationship, and knew purest relationship demanded free will, and so God offered such a lavish gift by placing both a tree and a serpent within the garden. Should mankind choose God’s dominion, neither the tree nor the serpent could harm them. Should they go their own way, God warned death would ensue.

Choosing God's way over ours offers us protection from the enemy's schemes. Click To Tweet

 

I Wept at The Weight of Choice…

For the first time I saw the consequences to God and His world in that one decision. God placed complete purity and innocence for his creation in jeopardy by giving his Adam the right to choose. To say his choice was ‘catastrophic’ is an understatement.

With the choosing, knowledge of evil suddenly altered Adam’s perspective of the One he’d so closely walked with–suspicion and fear indescribably marring the confidence and safety Adam and Eve had known.

  • Animals named by Adam, creatures God called ‘good,’ were now necessarily slaughtered to cover Adam’s nakedness, and to atone for Adam’s rebellion.
  • Not too much later, blood cried out to God from a grave as the first family lay torn apart by jealousy.
  • Within only generations, God would look down on what He’d made and weep as “every intent of the thoughts of his [man’s] heart was only evil continually.” (Genesis 6:6)

I Marveled at The Beauty and Power of Lavish Grace….

  • Within moments of catastrophe, God stepped in, and fashioned a garment with His own hands from the carcass of an innocent animal to cover Adam’s nakedness and atone for Adam’s rebellion.
  • God swiftly meted out needed consequences and boundaries to preserve Adam from experiencing evil’s consequences forever while instituting a massive assault against the serpent–promising One from the woman’s own decedents would one day destroy the serpent and its rule.
  • His very Son would become the spotlessly pure sacrifice, laying down His own life to restore relationship with any who would come and bow before Him willingly.

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My Perspective Changed…

This change in perspective is dramatically changing how I view God, my relationship with Him, and suffering. I’m coming to see:

  • God made us to know only the goodness of His rule. But from the beginning none consistently choose God’s rule over self-rule.
  • Self-rule always has long-range consequences, not only for us but those around us, impossible to see ahead of time.
  • Our choices and their consequences (or the choices of others and their consequences against us) are never too big that God can’t restore and heal.
  • God’s greatest work is to grant us the ability and will to bend our knee to His rule and turn away from our self-rule. Therein lies the greatest freedom, the greatest love, the greatest peace, and the greatest grace. God with us. God for us. Emmanuel.

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Where are You?

Where are you as you face a new year? Are you looking for pain relief? Are you wondering who this God is and why He’s allowed your suffering? I’m so sorry.

May I Pray for You?

Lord, this life is hard. Too many things sideswipe us and nearly take us out. Yet, as I read your amazing story, I marvel that you long for us, within all our mess, to run to you rather than away from you. I marvel that you choose to dwell with us and have taken every measure necessary to grant us freedom within your presence. Change our perspective in this new year so we can see you as you are, and not as we’ve assumed you to be. In Jesus’ name, amen.

If you’d like to speak further, please join the comment section; or if you’d prefer privacy, fill in the section below and I’ll get back with you.

With much love and care,

Robin <3

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