Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Proverbs 20:24 -- On Perspective

"Man’s goings are of the Lord; how can a man then understand his own way?"
Proverbs 20:24

This is an excellent and fascinating question.  In thinking about it, it seems to me to pull the camera way out for an overall shot of our lives.  God can see that overarching path, which is a perspective that we can never see while we are living the lives in question.  So, how can we understand our ways, if we can never see them laid out completely?
Maybe we can't always understand ourselves. Maybe we do the best with the limited information we have, and work on heading towards good goals, and then when something gets in the way, we work around it, or plow through it, or stop cold and go a different direction, based on what kind of obstacle it is.  But if there is an answer to the question in this verse, it is in seeking the Lord's help and his perspective.  We can't see what is coming.  We don't know when the obstacle will drop down from above.  We don't know some of the big changes that we will encounter unexpectedly.  But God does... and if we are in tune with his spirit, he can help us not only deal with what we are going through currently, but also help us prepare for the next obstacles in our path.  We learn as we go, and even though we don't understand why we go through some of the things that we do in our lives, in hindsight it often becomes clear that we needed to learn from past experiences to teach us and prepare us for what we are now facing.  Sometimes we have to be humiliated by our own pride and selfishness so that we can remember to choose meekness.  Sometimes we have to go through a giant trial so we can help a friend deal with a similar trial later, and know how to help.  God sees it all.  He knows how it works, and it is all designed to make us stronger, better, more compassionate, to lift us up and help us to be happy.  If we can't see that, it's okay.  Sometimes it is kind of dark down here from our perspective... but instead of despairing, let's seek God's light, and his help in making good choices.  Let's trust his perspective, and learn all we can so we can face the future with hope.

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