I get it. This world is rather crazy at the moment. Potentially stressful. Uncertain and unpredictable. But in the midst of negative things going on beyond our control, there’s plenty we can control.
YOU choose whether to be stressed or at rest.
YOU choose to experience happiness or frustration.
YOU choose faith or fear.
It’s always YOUR choice whether to have joy.
Remember, pain is usually unavoidable, but suffering is always optional.
I don’t know how the pandemic has impacted your family and life, but we’ve been choosing to focus on what we are still able to experience. There are many wonderful things we get to enjoy during this time at home. And it has truly been a delightful time. We are spending much more time outside and are enjoying biking trips, walks, puzzles, reading, games, and soaking up gorgeous spring weather in the mountains. DIY projects are therapeutic for me, so there are many of those I have to work on. I am truly loving this time!
However, I am keenly aware of the financial stress and losses that have come along with this pandemic. But just as in other hardships and struggles we’ve faced over the years, there are tons of blessings for each of us to focus on.
I certainly don’t intend to make light of anyone’s pain, but I wonder why we, Christians, are prone to wallowing in our pain rather than focusing on our blessings. And I’m speaking to myself first of all.
Christians are the most blessed individuals in the world. But we seldom realize it. More importantly, we seldom live it. Why? I think it boils down to one primary reason….
Don’t get me wrong, I truly understand (and have personally experienced!) that life can be hard. Breath-takingly hard. Excruciating painful.
I have a special place in my heart for individuals facing tough situations, painful circumstances, and intense losses. Our family’s life passion is to walk with people who are feeling hopeless while going through hard times.
But I really feel that once we grasp this one thing we’re missing, it will make ALL the difference. The difference between heart broken and completely devastated. Between disappointment and despair. Concerned or consumed. The difference between enduring or thriving in our broken world.
Most of us are continuing to view life from an earthly perspective rather than from an eternal.
My Friend, you WILL become discouraged, overwhelmed, fearful and, at times even devastated, when you are viewing life from an earthly perspective. But having an eternal perspective, makes ALL the difference.
Most Christians are walking around with earthly perspectives. This causes us to become stressed when things seem out of control. It makes us question God when we face trials and pain. When we have earthly perspectives, we will view hardships and difficulties as an injustice to what we deserve.
But think about it. Our lives here on earth are only bonus years. When Christians grasp an eternal perspective, they realize what they have awaiting is beyond indescribable. Even if each of our moments here on earth would be filled with intense pain, eternity is worth it. (And how many of us are not surrounded with hundreds of additional blessings each day?)
Heaven is our ultimate reward, but we live as if this broken earth is.
When I view life’s difficult events through the lens of eternity, they become mere shadows. Why dwell on our struggles and losses? When I have an eternal perspective, I realize my hardships have been nominal compared to my blessings.
Each moment of health, happiness or earthly blessing we receive are unwarranted bonuses.
Having an eternal perspective enables us to find joy in our most heart-breaking losses. It causes us to thank God for the precious moments we’ve had with our loved one. An eternal perspective enpowers us to focus on the years of good health we have enjoyed. It enables us to develop gratefulness for the things we possess rather than on what we don’t have. Having an eternal perspective fills each desperate heart with hope. Sustaining joy that cannot be stolen is the result of having an eternal viewpoint. Even while being shaken.
Our goal should always be to comfort those who are hurting. Weep with those who weep. However, as individuals and Believers in Christ, our focus needs to be on developing an eternal perspective in the midst of trials and losses, rather than on focusing on the worst case scenarios that may happen.
Are you finding plenty of reasons to rejoice in today?
The next time your feelings of self pity tell you no one cares, reflect on Gethsemane. When struggling to accept your trials, visualize Jesus carrying your pain while agonizing in that dark, forsaken garden. When your cross feels too heavy, remember the blood stained cross that bought your redemption.
Even if our world is shaken, we will not be.
We know who we are and what we have been promised. I believe it’s time we, Christians, show the world a better way than living in terror. Let’s demonstrate a peace-filled, grace-infused response to our pain and losses. (And let’s STOP being consumed by fear, paranoia and the godless media. Guess what? If it’s God’s plan for you to die from Covid 19, there’s nothing you can do to prevent it. And if it’s not God’s plan, you are untouchable.)
Will we be inconvenienced? Yes. Frustrated? Some times. But discouraged, despondent, and hopeless, never.
Just as you see spring flowers sprouting from barren soil, hope is bursting forth for you. Your life is a beautiful canvas filled with exciting opportunities. God has an incredible purpose and plan for you. Lay aside the heaviness. Reach for the joy. Count the multiple ways God shows His love for you every day. But most of all, you have eternity in all it’s splendor, ultimate joy and perfect relationships awaiting you.
If you choose faith rather than fear.
A heavenly perspective rather than earthly.
-Cindy (for the Mullett family)