How many times in life do we jump to assumptions? We create a perspective of a person, place or thing that is COMPLETELY wrong! Maybe someone says the phrase “My brother and his partner are very happy” and we automatically now days think “Oh they are homosexuals” little did we truly know that the person in question was a business partner in which they have a successful business and are both blessed! We sometimes jump to those conclusions of negative because we do live in a world that re-enforces those sterotypes – so we hear a word that triggers it, or an appearance that makes us think of someone or something instantly in a certain way – a perspective.
Perspective – a way of regarding situations, facts, etc, and judging their relative importance
In the word we can easily look at the times again and again that God really takes and makes people question their perspective – heck in some cases it wasn’t the external crowd, but the internal perspective of the person that was challenged with a Heavenly Perspective easy to start at the beginning of the Bible as we head to Exodus to a man named Moses, who had escaped death, become part of a royal family, and lived in luxury as his people were in slavery.
Now Moses in my mind was not a massive man, not a well spoken person – he lived in the palace but still I see him as that typical comic book character that has power thrown upon him, he lives a mild mannered life (yes a Superman reference) until one day while walking amoung his people:
11 One day, after Moses had grown up, he went out to where his own people were and watched them at their hard labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people.12 Glancing this way and that and seeing no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.
13 The next day he went out and saw two Hebrews fighting. He asked the one in the wrong, “Why are you hitting your fellow Hebrew?”
14 The man said, “Who made you ruler and judge over us? Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian?” Then Moses was afraid and thought, “What I did must have become known.”
15 When Pharaoh heard of this, he tried to kill Moses, but Moses fled from Pharaoh and went to live in Midian, where he sat down by a well.
So right there we have a killer. Murderer. And as the Hebrew noted “Who made you ruler and judge over us?” – Moses took action into his own hands and took a life – so right there instant qualification for being a servant of God right?
For a moment lets forget who Moses is, and re-read the scripture not as a scripture but rather the news article released the day after all this has gone down, probably read a little something like this:
Son of the Mayor Moses Hamilton was involved in a shooting which resulted in the death of a police officer in the 300 block of Egypt St. – at the scene a man only known to us as “Tom” said “He looked like felt he was judge and jury and took matters into his own hands! It was so quick, I barely had time to hide!” – Moses is 5 foot 7 inches and has light sandy hair and is considered armed and dangerous.
Okay – let’s decide again! Over privileged punk who decided to challenge authority and will probably get away with it and probably be out hurting someone all over again soon! Why would God choose a murderer? Why would He choose someone who was obviously not even liked by his own people! But later we see exactly that happen:
10 So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.”
11 But Moses said to God, “Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”
12 And God said, “I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.”
The first perspective we need to let go of is that God thinks like we do – We were designed in His image, however living in a world of sin has distorted our view of life in general – even Moses didn’t feel he was deserving! He noted “Who am I, that I should go?” and for all logic in it, he was right by the worlds standards – he killed a man and fled – but God has a vision and view of time and space that we lack, He sees past the current to the future, He sees past the choices to the possibilities – to things about our lives that we can’t even consider.
So that’s one person, but another is David – a boy who would become King. The servant of the Lord Samuel sent to anoint the future King went to find this robust Man who take over for Saul, and yet who Samuel had in mind was not who God had in mind.
4 Samuel did what the Lord said. When he arrived at Bethlehem, the elders of the town trembled when they met him. They asked, “Do you come in peace?”
5 Samuel replied, “Yes, in peace; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord. Consecrate yourselves and come to the sacrifice with me.” Then he consecrated Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice.
6 When they arrived, Samuel saw Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed stands here before the Lord.”
7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
8 Then Jesse called Abinadab and had him pass in front of Samuel. But Samuel said, “The Lord has not chosen this one either.”9 Jesse then had Shammah pass by, but Samuel said, “Nor has the Lord chosen this one.”10 Jesse had seven of his sons pass before Samuel, but Samuel said to him, “The Lord has not chosen these.”
11 So he asked Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?”
“There is still the youngest,” Jesse answered, “but he is tending the sheep.”
Samuel said, “Send for him; we will not sit down until he arrives.”
12 So he sent and had him brought in. He was ruddy, with a fine appearance and handsome features.
Then the Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; he is the one.”
I love the line in verse 7 “Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” another example of the view God has that we do not. He saw a boy who simply tended to sheep, yet He looked past that and saw a man who had the heart to protect a flock, but bigger still protect his country by slaying a giant – when no one else could!
An example of perspective in my own life deals with my Dad who is a car junkie, since his youth he has built up cars, raced cars, and even taught me how to do some simple work from changing a tire to changing my oil, he looks at a car and sees something entirely different than I do – he knows the ins and outs of engines and how to put things back together and get them working again! I recall a few years back when my dad wanted to get on eBay and presented me with a large spring looking thing covered in rust.
Now to me the computer guy, I saw nothing more than a rusty spring. Who’d want to buy that? But my dad knew its value aside from its appearance and sold it on eBay! When I thought it was good for nothing at all! My perspective and his were different – like God said to Samuel, He looked at something else other than the appearance of things and saw value, where I saw rust, dad saw a part that could help another person’s car!
While there are other examples in the Word of people that God used which most would of looked at and said “Wha?!” the one I think that helps really help put things into perspective of the importance of not relying always on your first perspective is this one, a man named Jesus.
1 Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples.
2 When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed.
“Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him, that he even does miracles!
3 Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.
4 Jesus said to them, “Only in his hometown, among his relatives and in his own house is a prophet without honor.”
Jesus – Son of God – dismissed by some as they saw Him as what they knew of Him – a carpenter’s son and carpenter by trade, they didn’t think that such wisdom and miracles could ever be done by Him, and then from perspective grew jealousy as why should a lowly carpenter be given these abilities? How was he more deserving?! While we knew the truth while reading that this man named Jesus was the Son of God, they had a perspective of a Carpenters Son.
How many times in life do we apply a perspective to the homeless man? To the woman who comes up and tells you she is broken down and needs money for Gas or a ticket to home? To that kid with the big loops in his ears asking for bus fare home? We size them up, we take earthly stance on things, we look at the man who smells of booze and think “If he can afford booze, I don’t need to give him money.” or the woman who while looking for Gas money has a $200 handbag and a little dog sticking its head out of it, if she can afford those? And the kid, he may not be what we think a young man should look like, and why aren’t his parents paying?
1 Keep on loving each other as brothers.2 Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.
We need to learn to let our perspective go sometimes and in that moment truly stop and pray and ask God for a more Heavenly perspective – because how many times have we pushed someone away by our perspective, our earthly view when our goal on this planet is to Seek and to Save the Lost?
Today strive to see people not as you see at first glance, see them as God does, a possibility, just like the song my siblings and I sang when we were kids “I am a promise, I am a possibility, I am a promise, with a Capital P, I am a great big bundle of potientality!” look past the baggy pants, look past the smoking, the drinking, look past the lifestyle they are currently living and see what they COULD be, aim for that heavenly perspective and see them less as a lost cause and more as a cause for sharing your faith – its amazing what you can share with someone over filling up a gas tank, or in giving a few bucks to get a bite to eat, don’t let your perspective stop a possible opportunity to show God’s love to others.
Remember too that at some point in your life someone looked past the wrong perspective in your life, they saw past who you were to who you could be and followed that heavenly perspective to encourage you and maybe even share the greatest gift one can get on this earth, gift of salvation and forever changed your life – so today, don’t let your perspective hold you back from helping, loving and leading another to Christ, who knows the changes that life may make in others lives that may of been in a similar place – like my Dad with Cars, he understands them, and he can talk to Car guys like nothing else! One changed perspective, can change a life, and possibly bring another to Christ.