Sometimes it’s hard to keep a proper perspective. I go to work everyday in a major medical facility, and as I walk the halls and see the patients it can be really overwhelming. I mean, these people are sick. We’re talking sick. It’s hard to see it sometimes. Young and old alike are suffering.
I know what you are probably thinking, because I think it, too. “Wait, it’s hard on you? You’re not the one in the hospital bed.” And that’s really true. Yet day after day, seeing such trauma and illness can begin to work on a person. If I am not careful, I can lose perspective. I can forget that what I am seeing is still the exception, and not the rule. Most people aren’t sick like the ones I see every day. And sometimes, I get to see miracles. It’s on those days when my perspective rights itself. On those days when someone “beats the odds”, I can keep going, keep working. Sometimes I get to meet someone who is pushing through their adversity and keeping their eyes on the Lord. Those are amazing people.
My husband used to preach a message on keeping a proper perspective. It was a great message. He talked about Peter, and how Peter walked upon the water. Now, of course, Peter did sink, but only after he did walk. As long as Peter had a proper perspective, he was walking upon the water. His eyes were focused on Jesus. His eyes were not focused on the storm around him, or his friends who were probably screaming at him for getting out of the boat in the first place. No, his focus was proper, his perspective was on Jesus.
Sadly, for Peter, those precious moments were few. I don’t blame him much, it took a lot of guts to climb out of that boat to begin with. Out there on the water, he began to hear the wind, get splashed in the face, see the waves, listen to his friends, and begin to realize that what he was doing was crazy. (Only moments before, he was actually doing successfully that which was crazy.) He began to listen to reason, he began to weigh his options, he freaked out, he stopped moving forward and therefore, he started moving downward.
One of my great friends has cool life philosophy. It’s a simple one. “Keep moving forward.” It’s a pretty good philosophy, really. If Peter had believed this philosophy, if he had only kept moving forward toward Jesus, he would not have taken the plunge into the stormy sea.
There is a rescue when we lose our perspective. Just as Peter found out, when we stop our forward motion and begin to sink, when we take our eyes off of Jesus and lose our way, he is closer than a breath and He’s there to pick us up. But don’t you know He wants us to walk on that water to Him? Don’t you know every time we push through adversity and keep our eyes on Him, His heart leaps with joy for us?
Have you lost perspective? Are you distracted by the things that seem too heavy and too great to bear? What about those insurmountable odds? Are those causing you to lose your focus and turn your eyes from Jesus? Just remember, while it would make His heart sing for us to keep moving forward, he is close as our shadow and there to pick us up if we sink. He will fix our perspective and set us right again. He’s just great like that.
Need a rescue? Take heart. Peter was one of Jesus’ closest friends. He knew intimately what Jesus was capable of and even he lost his focus. Even Peter needed a rescue. So stop beating yourself up over it. Reach out, allow Jesus to lift you up and set you on sure footing once again.
“Turn your eyes upon Jesus, Look full in His wonderful face, And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, In the light of His glory and grace.” (Helen Lemmel, 1922)