I was once told about an astronaut that described what it was like in outer space. He summed it up in one word, “Peaceful.”
I imagine it would be peaceful far above, and far removed from all of the chaos taking place on this little spec of dust floating through the universe. When we change our perspective it can have a great impact on how we feel, and what we think in our every day lives. Colossians 3:2 says it this way,
“Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.”
There are so many voices vying for our attention in this world. Voices on the TV, voices on the radio, voices on the Internet, voices on billboards and in advertisements. Then there are our national leaders, our friends, family and co-workers – not to mention the voice that is always running around in your own mind! There are tornadoes and floods, earthquakes and fires, tensions mounting on the international stage. Without the right perspective we can become overwhelmed by all that is taking place around us.
Have you ever thought about how hard it can be to find your way out of a maze when you are walking around inside of it, and on the flip side, how easy that same task can become when you have an aerial view? Why? What has changed? Perspective.
God is always calling us up higher. He wants us to live life from a different perspective.
He wants us to “set our affection” on things above. “Setting your affection” is a phrase rooted in the word (phroneo), and it means to direct one’s mind to a thing, to seek for, to strive for; to have understanding and be wise about. What are we to direct our minds toward, to seek for, and have understanding about: “things above.” The word for “things above” is translated in other parts of the Bible as our “high calling.”
I was listening to the news the other day to follow the details about tornadoes in my area when I heard a story of a soldier who had fought in Iraq. He died at home in the states while sheltering his two children and his wife from the recent storm. It so affected me to picture that image in my mind, and to think of his heroism. I prayed for the family thinking of how life had changed so drastically for them in one day, and then I set my affection on things above.
I reminded myself of the brevity of this life, and the limited time that we have to fulfill our high calling. I thought about how every day must be precious to us, and how God exhorts us to, “…not be unwise, but to redeem the time…” because we are sojourners here with assignments to complete before we go to our eternal home.
Sometimes life has us feeling like we are lost in a maze with little sense of which direction to take. Sometimes it is the circumstances surrounding us – like a future that now has to be lived without the husband and father you thought would be there. Sometimes it is the noise of the world as it shouts to keep our attention. Whatever creates the maze you may find yourself in right now, there is one simple solution for how to get out: LOOK UP. When you redirect your mind to the heavens – to God Himself, He can lift you up to see things from His perspective, and from that vantage point, the right path will be clear.
Thankfully, we don’t have to find a rocket ship and fly into outer space to find our peace. Jesus said,
“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” ~ John 14:27
So what are you looking at? If you find yourself troubled and without peace, it’s time to change your perspective. Stop looking at what’s right in front of you and look to God. Set your mind on your high calling, and keep eternity in your heart when this temporary life has you feeling lost. God knows right where you’re at, and just like that brave husband and father, He will shelter you from the storm.