Friday, April 26, 2013

Perspective-Lifter Problems

Do you find some kinds of problems easier to trust God with than others? I do, and I can know just by looking at those types of problems where my greater weaknesses may be and where I struggle the most in trusting God. This does not mean that it is an all-the-time struggle, but when I struggle it most frequently falls into that area. And the crazy thing is that it is in this same area where, as I look back, I have seen God to be so attentive and gracious. His patience with me is amazing, especially when I put myself in a hole because I have not seen my hope in Him.

But it is also in these times of emotional darkness that I also find my way out not by eating a “happy pill” but by choosing to focus on who my God is. Psalm 139 is the passage God used to draw me to Him in 1974 and there is so much in it, and it is in these times of struggle that Psalm 139 is one of the first places I run. Just think on this:

Psalm 139:7-12 Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend to heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the dawn, If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea, even there Your hand will lead me, and Your right hand will lay hold of me. If I say, “Surely the darkness will overwhelm me, and the light around me will be night,” even the darkness is not dark to You, and the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to You.

“Darkness and light are alike to You.” This is an amazing truth. No matter how dark things might look from our side, for God there is no difference. He knows everything and has known everything from the beginning. He is powerful over everything, and it is Him who spoke all that was created into existence. Before even He created the sun, moon, and stars to rule over the day and night in our physical realm, He first created light as we see in Genesis 1:3.

Then we have Jesus’ statement about Himself in John 8:12, John 8:12 “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” And in 1 John 1:5 we read, “This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.”

So, when the darkness overwhelms us, we need to look outside the darkness to God and commit to trust Him to be the light by which we live, to set our paths straight, and to truly provide for that which we need. Today Sarah encourages us to look to our problems as perspective-lifters as they cause us to lift our eyes to our God and place our trust fully in Him.

Today in “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young (4/26)

Welcome problems as perspective-lifters. My children tend to sleepwalk through their days until they bump into an obstacle that stymies them. If you encounter a problem with no immediate solution, your response to that situation will take you either up or down. You can lash out at the difficulty, resenting it and feeling sorry for yourself. This will take you down into a pit of self-pity. Alternatively, the problem can be a ladder, enabling you to climb up and see your life from My perspective. Viewed from above, the obstacle that frustrated you is only a light and momentary trouble. Once your perspective has been heightened, you can look away from the problem altogether. Turn toward Me, and see the Light of My Presence shining upon you.

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you, who walk in the light of your presence, O Lord. Psalm 89:15

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