2 Kings 6, 1 Timothy 2
Chris Mountford considers how God speaks through the people in our lives.
I recently enjoyed a very nice summer holiday abroad. I had a brilliant time with family and friends, enjoying life and sunshine, resting and relaxing. Inevitably, the time to head back for home came around soon enough. Mind you, the journey home came with one last treat: a window seat. I love windows seats! I hadn't had a window seat on a plane for quite a while and I loved it...watching the take-off, looking at the buildings and towns getting smaller during the ascent and seeing the land and sea from so high up.
A few minutes into the flight home I noticed that the plane flew right over the seaside town where we had stayed. I couldn't make out the town's quaint streets anymore, I couldn't identify the fabulous restaurants that I had eaten in, the amazing patisserie or the swimming pool that my kids enjoyed jumping in (lost count of how many times). We were too high up to distinguish the detail but I knew it was the same town; the distinct shell-shaped beach was a dead giveaway. This time I was viewing it from a different perspective. Now I could see the town in one glance. I could make out more of the context of the land in which it was located.
I find it can be helpful sometimes in life to get a new perspective on things. It can be refreshing, like a breath of fresh air.
Sometimes I need someone to give me a new perspective on a circumstance I've been facing for a while. A trusted friend can give me a key to a new understanding about something I've been struggling with. Sometimes a new perspective can help me to approach a situation differently in a new way that I hadn't thought about before.
There's an account in the Bible about Elisha who was in hot water with the king of Aram after causing consistent setbacks and defeat for the king's army (2 Kings 6). The king sent his spies to locate Elisha and then his army to surround him. Elisha's servant was understandably afraid when this happened and asked, "What shall we do?" Elisha answered that there are more with them than with the siege force. He prayed that God would open his servant's eyes and as a result, the servant looked out again and saw that the hills around them were full of horses and chariots of fire. Elisha had an unseen force on his side.
The servant was granted a new perspective - and the story goes on, they were able to fool their enemy once more.
There are times when we too need a new perspective on certain things in life. It can be like a little key that unlocks a new approach that we should take, a new level unlocked in our 'game of life'.
Like the servant in that Bible story, I believe that God places people around us who can help us get that new perspective. We had a vicar who visited our radio station earlier in the year for an interview in one of our programmes, he said, "Perspectives are defined by relationships. Good, positive relationships influence massively how we see the world. Talk to others, ask 'how do you view this?'".
Are there trusted, wise people that God has placed in your life to help you? Or maybe there is someone that you don't usually talk to but you trust that they hear from God. Why not approach them and ask for their perspective on a situation?
Secondly, I believe we can be like Elisha in the story, a person who walked hand-in-hand with God. It changes everything when you can walk with that kind of divine point of reference. The Bible says 'there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus' (1 Timothy 2). Jesus is the go-between, the intermediary between you and God. So why not ask Jesus for a new perspective and see what happens?The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.
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