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Michelle Warner

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Needed: A Fresh Perspective

Posted on August 8th, 2011

Monday Morsel

sometimes random.
sometimes deep.
just a little something
to begin your week.

Yesterday afternoon, Jared and I needed to escape from our house. And fast. You know when your circumstances feel like they are closing in on you? That was the exact feeling I was having and I needed a change of scenery. We decided to take a trip to a nearby walking trail, clear our minds, and take in the sights of nature. As we drove, I silently asked God to help me view my present circumstances with a better perspective because frankly, my perspective needed an overhaul.

Then a song came on the radio that I knew was a direct answer to my prayer: “This Is the Stuff” by Francesca Battistelli. (I posted the words below for you to read.) She addresses the little inconveniences that occur in life and redirects us back to God’s purpose in molding our character to look like Him.

I desperately needed that truth because today I was rattled by my circumstances. I wrote in one of my last posts that we’ve had a bit of whirlwind the past couple of months. Yesterday we found out that we need to bring a contractor into our basement and garage to cut out two feet along all of the walls to remove water damage to our drywall and baseboards. In the scheme of life, it’s totally not a huge deal; I’ve gone through a whole lot more trying of circumstances in the last two years. But yesterday the news of having to rip out our drywall and make more of a mess than there already is to a disheveled basement and garage felt totally overwhelming.

Do you have days like that? When the little things seem to take you over the edge?

Sometimes I think it’s because we forget to take our minor inconveniences to God. It’s almost like the little troubles are heavier than the major interruptions in our lives because when we’re going through a huge crisis, we tend to hold onto God with both hands and depend upon His strength to endure; I can certainly attest to that when going through my cancer bout. But when the minor inconveniences interrupt our lives, we can often forget to ask for God’s help to stay focused on what really matters. Or at least I’ll speak for myself: as Jared and I are dealing with the frustrating repercussions of a flooded basement (among other things), I can seem to become more annoyed than prayerful. Sadly, my energy is spent more on fixing the problems than asking God for a good attitude. How easily my focus is shifted onto myself rather than God!

As I was writing this post, I kept thinking about an insight Beth Moore made in her Bible Study about Esther:

“If we distance ourselves long enough from real needs, we replace them with those that aren’t. Pretense becomes the new real and suddenly a delay in the delivery of our new couch becomes a terrible upset. We are wise to force ourselves to keep differentiating between simple inconveniences and authentic tribulations. The more detached and self-absorbed we become, the more we mistake annoyances for agonies. It happens to all of us. I often have to tell myself to get a grip and downsize how I’ve blown up a comparatively small problem” (Esther: It’s Tough Being a Woman, pg 92-93).

While we walked on the forest preserve trail yesterday afternoon, the fresh air, good company, and sunshine helped renew my perspective. The several deer that we spotted along our trek made me smile too. I found myself asking God for help to view my circumstances the way He desired and to discover the purpose He wanted us to find in the minor annoyances of life. And to choose to be thankful for all of the blessings and answered prayers we’ve been given. When we returned home, the towel-covered basement floors, the half-finished wood stairs, and the soggy boxes lining our garbage bin didn’t seem to phase me like they did before we left.

Sometimes all it takes is a fresh perspective.

“So if you’re serious about living
this new resurrection life with Christ,
act like it.
Pursue the things over which Christ presides.
Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground,
absorbed with the things right in front of you.
Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—
that’s where the action is.
See things from his perspective.”
Colossians 3:1

**

“This Is the Stuff” by Francesca Batestelli:

I lost my keys in the great unknown
And call me please ‘Cuz I can’t find my phone

This is the stuff that drives me crazy
This is the stuff that’s getting to me lately
In the middle of my little mess
I forget how big I’m blessed
This is the stuff that gets under my skin
But I gotta trust You know exactly what You’re doing
It might not be what I would choose
But this is the stuff You use

45 in a 35
Sirens and fines while I’m running behind
Whoa

This is the stuff that drives me crazy
This is the stuff that’s getting to me lately
In the middle of my little mess
I forget how big I’m blessed
This is the stuff that gets under my skin
But I gotta trust You know exactly what You’re doing
It might not be what I would choose
But this is the stuff You use

So break me of impatience
Conquer my frustrations
I’ve got a new appreciation
It’s not the end of the world
Oh Oh Oh

This is the stuff that drives me crazy
This is the stuff
Someone save me
In the middle of my little mess
I forget how big I’m blessed
This is the stuff that gets under my skin
And I’ve gotta trust You know exactly what You’re doing
It might not be what I would choose
But this is the stuff You use

3 Comments on “Needed: A Fresh Perspective”

  • Niki Blake says:

    Good post MIchelle! I love this song……so sorry about your basement. UGH! Hope it is repaired quickly! :)

  • Judy says:

    Good stuff, my friend. Love you.

  • Marianne says:

    Thanks so much for this perspective! I’m so glad I stumbled in here and was able to see what you’re doing to encourage people to be mindful of God in all things. A very valuable (and for me, very repeatable) message. Keep it up!

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