Think About These Things from God’s Perspective
Do you ever find yourself wondering what you should be thinking about? Philippians 4:8 teaches us to think about these things from God’s perspective. But it certainly is easy to get confused in the process, isn’t it?
What’s the Right Perspective?
Our family is spread across the continent – from Florida to California, from Canada to Texas – spanning too many time zones! We have also visited family and friends overseas with innumerable time zones to cross. Okay, I’m exaggerating. You can count the time zones you cross when you fly to China. But it makes me SO TIRED thinking about what time it is where we came from, where we are, and where we are going!
A Google keyword search regarding jet lag, travel tips, time zones, etc., offers a lot of advice about adjusting to time changes and many theories about the best ways to get acclimated. One primary piece of advice you will consistently find is that it is essential to follow the new time zone schedule right away. For example, if it’s 10:00 in the morning when you arrive, don’t go to sleep until 10:00 at night no matter how difficult it is to stay awake!
Avoid the Double-Minded Mentality
Regardless of how often we travel across time zones, there is one issue we struggle with that I did not find anyone addressing in their travel tips. While we stare at our watches, trying to comprehend what time it REALLY is, we adopt a double-minded mentality.
You probably do the same thing even when you adjust to semiannual time changes. You go to bed on Saturday night and set your clocks to spring forward one hour or fall back one hour while telling yourself to think with the new time in mind. We say things like, “I just moved the clock ahead one hour. It’s now midnight, so we need to go to bed! Wait, it’s midnight! Oh my goodness, why are we going to bed so late? We sure are going to be tired trying to get up for church in the morning!” And then when the Sunday morning alarm sounds, and we feel dead to the world, we try to think about what time our body REALLY thinks it is. Well, what time IS it, REALLY?
My husband is notorious for glaring at his watch after crossing time zones and then saying something like, “I’m hungry! You know it’s REALLY past lunchtime,” even though it may only be 10:00 in the morning local time. Then issues get complicated when we pack our bags and head to a third time zone within less than a week. What time is it REALLY? It may be noon for my parents in Florida; for our daughter in California, it is 9:00 am, while it is 10:00 am for our other daughter in Denver. So, what time is it REALLY? It depends on where we are and where we choose to set our focus.
A Standard Is Required
A standard is required. What authority will I choose to follow? Will I focus on Eastern Standard Time, Mountain Time, or Pacific Time, or have I crossed the International Date Line for a completely different perspective?
When we view life from God’s perspective, “we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28 NKJV). From my vantage point, I may not be able to see any good, but God sees all things working together for good. Will I choose to focus on my perspective or God’s?
Wouldn’t you love to be able to see all things working together for good instead of living with an Eeyore mindset? To accomplish this, I must let go of my subjective frame of reference and learn the adopt God’s understanding. Indeed, unless my focus aligns with God’s perspective, I am not living in truth.
Philippians 4:8 tells us to think about things from God’s perspective.
Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.Philippians 4:8 NLT
Which Perspective Will You Choose?
Have you realized that you can look at one situation from multiple angles? It is easy to see the awful in many circumstances, but can we look at the same situation and see what is true, right, and awesome about it? Is there any way that we see lovely in events that also can be viewed as terrible? Can we praise in the midst of a storm?
This blog post is the first in a series on Philippians 4:8. Dig into each description to determine how to think about these things from God’s perspective.
- Whatever Is True – Think About These Things
- Whatever Is Honorable – Think About These Things
- Whatever Is Right – Think About These Things
- Whatever Is Pure – Think About These Things
- Whatever Is Lovely – Think About These Things
- Whatever Is Admirable – Think About These Things
- Whatever Is Excellent – Think About These Things
- Whatever Is Praiseworthy – Think About These Things
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