Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Jesus Perspective by Martin Wiles

A negative occurrence or a positive event; it depends on how I interpret it.

Perspective. Defined, it’s my point of view about particular experiences. But I’ve come to realize it can be flawed…or completely erroneous.  I once considered being knocked off my feet for a week by a bleeding ulcer combined with the lengthy recuperation period as an aggravating interruption to my important life. In reality, it helped rearrange my priorities. Having a negative attitude about financial struggles was also perhaps unwise. Struggling with these issues taught me to make better choices in my spending and saving.

Jesus’ perspective was also different than the norm. Absence of all forms of struggle equals peace for some, but Jesus spoke about another type of peace. I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give (John 14:27 NLT).

As happiness depends on happenings while joy is determined by a relationship with Jesus, so some experience peace only when there’s a total absence of conflict. The peace Jesus gives…the peace the world can’t understand, isn’t related to circumstances-pleasant or not.

Jesus’ initial peace comes through an affiliation with him. Once the connection is made, continual peace is experienced by remembering he knows the beginning from the end of any given happening. The end may not appear good to us, but he’ll make it good for us…just as a conscientious parent uses discipline and restriction for the good of their child even though the child may not understand it. Absence of conflict isn’t required to experience Jesus’ peace; we can know it even in the most trying situations.

Want the Jesus perspective? Don’t worry, pray about everything, thank God for all he’s done, and tell him what you need (Philippians 4:6).

Prayer: Father we thank You for controlling all of our life events. Grant us the peace that comes from realizing You’re in control because You love us with the greatest love.

Try one of my wife's favorite recipes. Visit the Recipe Room.