I liked everything about my new apartment, except my kitchen view. Every time I looked over the window, garbage cans reminded me of how broken the world is. I could see people searching for goods all the time. Even if I didn’t look, the noise of the garbage truck wouldn’t let me forget it.
The growing disgust in my heart wouldn’t allow me to enjoy our apartment, which was a gift from God, an answer to our prayers over many years. It was hard to hide my lack of gratitude when friends were asking about our new home.
One early morning, when I looked out the kitchen window I could see the signs of the dawn between the buildings — a beautiful piece of red sky. My soul longed for beauty and I wished to be able to admire it. Suddenly, I realized I could climb to the top of the building — the 17th floor. It had an open balcony near the stairs.
I had to be quick if I wanted to catch the beauty. I took my phone for pictures and I ran to the elevator. What a different view opened before my eyes! The building across grew small, letting me see many others stretched until far away. The dawn filled the air with a warm light. Everything looked on fire. A sense of joy and gratitude filled my heart as I looked over the waking city. One by one, the window lights were turning on. A little further, cars were speeding up and down the road, carrying people into their new day.
When I looked down, my head started spinning lightly. It is the highest building I have ever lived in. To my amazement, I could barely see the garbage cans.
I looked up again, and a sudden realization came to me: this beauty was there every day since we moved over a year ago. And I was looking at the garbage cans! How many dawns did I miss?
I lived the truth of Jesus’ words — the eye is the lamp of the body. This mysterious passage from the Sermon on the Mount opened its meaning to me. The eye is my perspective, my vantage point. When our problems are the only thing that we see, maybe we just need an elevator ride. Maybe just changing our vantage point will allow us to see things differently, maybe closer to God’s perspective. The higher we climb, the better we can see.
That early morning, my heart was healed. The ingratitude vanished away. Now, I have the same kitchen garbage view, but I know that the 17th-floor view is there too. I remind myself that it is just one elevator ride away. And sometimes I do go up to the roof to admire it again. It has the same healing effect on my heart every time.
Is there an area in your life where it’s hard for you to see God? What would an “elevator ride” be for you?
_Father, thank you that we have the mind of Christ because your Spirit lives in us. Renew my thinking about my circumstances today and fill my heart with thankfulness for all the blessings that surround me. _
Throughout This Day: Whenever you remember, invite God to show your life circumstances from his perspective.
Photo Credit: Jeremy Zero on Unsplash