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September 19, 2017, by Dr. Phil Christopher

“The Power of Perspective”


Chuck Swindoll suggests that the secret to happiness is perspective.  Perspective determines our attitude, approach to life, and the ways we handle challenges. Do we moan and mope our way through the inevitable difficulties of life?  There is an old Yiddish Proverb that says, “to a worm in horseradish, the world is horseradish.” Perhaps you feel like a worm in horseradish…. The only thing you can see is where you are, right now.  You see the negative. You see the problems. Perhaps you see through the eyes of fear.


Remember the power of perspective when the children of Israel passed through the wilderness on the way to the Promised Land.  They had been set free from 400 years of slavery.  God had delivered them. God even parted the sea when the people’s backs were against the wall with no way of escape.  Now the people complain and grumble against Moses that they will starve.  You talk about loss of perspective. They even think they had it better back in Egypt.  How easily we look back to the “good old days” but those days aren’t as quite as “good” as we remember – perspective. 


God will feed them with “manna,” which in the Hebrew means, “what is this?”  The “manna story” is not so much about what they were eating. This story is about perspective. God is trustworthy to provide for our every need, even in the wilderness.  God is generous and like with the manna, there will always be enough, even when we are anxious about our daily provisions.  Some worried that there would not be enough for the next day.  Their perspective is that God cannot be trusted.  They collected more manna than they needed trying to stock-pile it for another day – just in case, but the extra manna spoiled overnight.  We need the perspective to trust God will provide every morning and for every need.  The book of Lamentations gives us perspective: “Fresh and new are his mercies and provisions every morning.”


This story might sound crazy to some, especially in our consumer culture of comfort. But enjoy the journey through the wilderness with all of its dangers and challenges. Discover the perspective that God can be trusted to generously provide in the wilderness. We learn some of our greatest lessons in the wilderness. The Creator will give strength and bread for today and hope for tomorrow even in the wilderness. Keep trusting through the power of perspective that the wilderness of the moment will one day be behind us…and that God is always taking us to the Promised Land.  No matter where we are we – have hope – even in horseradish.


Prompts: Let me hear from you…

What shapes your perspective especially in approaching challenges? How do you have a distorted perspective about the past? In what ways has some “wilderness time” been fertile as you trusted that God will provide?