Have you ever witnessed something with several other people present and when asked about the event, everyone shared a different perspective? It’s amazing to me how several people can experience the same thing and yet have several unique interpretations. How two children can be brought up in the same household with the same parents at the same time and develop such different philosophies of life is very intriguing.
There was a time in history when a man named Moses sent 12 of his military personal out on a reconnaissance mission. It’s recorded in the book of Numbers Chapter 13. They were given these instructions: “Go through the desert and into the hill country. See what the land is like and find out whether the people living there are strong or weak, few or many. What kind of land do they live in? Is it good or bad? Do their towns have walls or are they unprotected?
The purpose of this exploration was to help the Israelites develop a strategy for acquiring that territory since God had given it to them as their inheritance. Here’s the report they gave to Moses.
“We arrived in the land you sent us to see, and it is a magnificent country but the people living there are powerful, and their cities and towns are fortified. We can’t go up against them! They are stronger than we are! We even saw giants. We felt like grasshoppers next to them, and that’s what we looked like to them!” But Caleb tried to encourage the people along with Joshua as they stood before Moses. “Let’s go at once to take the land,” he said. “We can certainly conquer it!”
Twelve different people and two very different perspectives! Ten saw things in a very negative way and only Joshua and Caleb saw things in a positive light.
In my early years of life and even into my mid thirties, I was an extremely negative person. If someone came up with an idea or a suggestion, I could give 10 reasons why it wouldn’t work. I was so good at being negative; I thought I had a special gift! My philosophy was simple: expect the worst and you won’t be disappointed. This philosophy seems to guarantee a certain level of stability but it also keeps you from experiencing a whole lot of joy.
A pessimist has a tendency to see the worst rather than the best and this is witnessed by the way they talk. Everything is negative!
If you have a negative perspective, you may need to change your position. When standing on the ground, things can look overwhelming and intimidating but when you get into a plane and fly a few thousand feet above land things look a lot smaller. You gain a new perspective by simply changing your position.
If you know God, Ephesians 2:6 says: “you are positioned in the heavenly realm with him.” High above all things! In other words, you can see with God’s eyes. He has a greater vantage point and a much broader view. The Israelites would have done better had they put their faith in God and viewed things through his eyes rather than their own.
When you try to see God through the myriad of problems you encounter rather than seeing your problems through God’s eyes your perspective becomes skewed. If you tend to see things in a negative light, it might be time to put your faith in God and get some new ‘spiritual glasses.’ It will be amazing how your perspective will change.