Adding Filters to Your Memories
I recently posted half of the picture above on Facebook. It was taken at a vacation home someone was kind enough to let us stay at before we headed back to China. Before loading it to Facebook, I played with a photo app to get the right look. The responses about the picture were interesting as almost overwhelmed by the picture. After awhile I felt the need to post the original picture before the edits as I may be giving a false witness to my experience.
After posting the original, I began to realize the edited version better represented my experience. To me the vacation home was amazing. We had incredible views. Got to see sunrises and sunsets. There were hot-air balloons lifting off in the morning over that tree. The whole place was beautiful, and I felt loved by God by being there.
Remembering What God Has Done
For two months in America, my family frequently shared with people our stories of China and what God was doing. People’s responses were very encouraging to us as they were excited how God had provided for us and was leading us in the process. Their encouragement encouraged us.
It had been three years since the girls and I had been back. Most of our focus in China was doing paperwork, spending money, homeschooling, shopping, etc. It can really feel mundane – just living life. God would do something amazing rather frequently, but the mundane of life would just come back and command our attention. Reiterating the stories brought back to mind all that God has done for us. It gave us reignited hope and excitement for what is ahead.
Your Perspective is Your Choice
We all have a choice at what perspective we want to have. Do we focus in on the problems that need to be addressed or obstacles that need to be overcome? Do we remember all those things that went wrong or mistakes we made along the way? What does God want us to focus our attention on?
We are to set our eyes on Jesus (Hebrews 12:2). Is He discouraged? Does He think your future is bleak? NO! He came to give you abundant life (John 10:10). He has a future and a plan for your good (Jeremiah 29:11). God knows that there is nothing that is impossible for you (Matthew 17:20).
Your perspective affects your prayers. It limits or enhances what you bring before God. Let’s set our minds on things above and find the hope God offers us in any situation (Romans 8:28). He always has a solution.
If you are facing discouragement, know this is not God’s plan for you. He wants to encourage you. He wants you to see the joy set before you (Hebrews 12:2). If you have hard time changing perspectives, find people who are full of hope and hang out with them. Go find life. Change the filter on what you see (Colossians 3:1-2). Christians should be the most hope-filled people in the world (Ephesians 2:12).
Kevin Shorter is the founder of this prayer-coach site and have served for several years in ministry and churches teaching on a variety of Biblical topics. Go to the contact page to request him to speak at your conferences and seminars.