Where We're At Wednesday with Rachel

I have known so much love in my life.

That’s a fact.

It’s a fact I know well and still struggle to grasp onto at nearly thirty years of age.


There’s this quote that I love from The Hunger Games series. Forgive me if you’re not a fan—but there’s a special place in my heart for Katniss Everdeen so maybe just try to follow along.

When Haymitch is helping Katniss prepare for the fight of her life, he tells her time and time again,

“Eyes on the forest not on the trees.”

Of course we’ve all heard sayings that sort of carry the same meaning. Try to look at the big picture rather than zooming in on the little details. It’s all about perspective.

Last year in Mexico, I asked my seventh grade Bible students to tell me their absolute favorite food. Ironically, one of them said Lasagna. I told him then to imagine a giant garden filled with trees with all sorts of delicious food on them. Right in the middle, there’s a lasagna tree. All around are trees that contain all of the necessary ingredients to make lasagna. He’s not supposed to eat off of that lasagna tree. I asked him if he would. Of course he gasped and told me no.

“Yes you would.” I told him with a smirk and an eyebrow raise. “And so would I. We all would.”

See the only reason we cringe at the thought of that sort of disobedience is because hindsight is 20/20. We know the results of that sin and all of the repercussions—we know them so well—and we love to think that we would never. That somehow we are stronger or wiser or above Eve and her husband Adam. We’re not. We’re the same.

I’m sure by now you’re lost and wondering how I’m ever going to pull this all together (me too a little bit.) I’m at least going to try.

I think sometimes we’re hard on Eve. How could she be so weak and foolish—why did she have to go for that tree when there were so many others to choose from?

I’ll tell you why. Because Satan had already got her to question God’s goodness. She was already doubting what God said and who He was. She was not convinced that God wasn’t holding out on her by keeping her from that tree—He must be and so He must be less kind and generous and good than she had known.

Sound like anyone you know? I confess it sounds exactly like me all too often.

Here I am. So many good things and wonderful people in my life—so much love—always provided for in every way—so much to be grateful for, and somehow, all I can pay attention to and think about and focus on is what I don’t have. And what’s worse, it leaves me questioning God’s goodness and wondering if He is who I thought He was all along.

It’s not an easy task, but over and over again I’ve got to remind myself to get my eyes off of the trees and onto the forest. To see the big picture and get some perspective. My perspective feels so valid and real and justified, but more often than not, it needs some tweaking.

I’ll be honest with you. This thought has been on my heart for the last couple of days. I keep circling around to it as I’m currently facing another perspective crisis. But there have been several temper tantrums in between. Some sassiness and angry rants to friends and to God. There have been tears. Sad tears and confused tears and angry tears and hard questions.

But I keep coming back to that quote. That there is so much more than what my vision is zoomed in on. This is only one tree out of so many creating a forest of God’s goodness and generosity in my life!

The truth is, perspective shift is hard and constant work. It doesn’t happen overnight and it’s not a one time occurrence. It takes time to see things the way that God does and it's something we’ll never stop learning!

Here are a couple of passages that I come back to time and time again that always seem to help me gain me forest perspective:

Lamentations 3 (all of it) I’ll let you dig in to that one yourself because it’s a lot! Essentially Jeremiah’s prayer here (direct conversation with God) shows us that even when it seems we have no reason to hope or to believe that God is all He says He is, His word and His character are more than we need to do so. 

And I’ll leave you with this—

“I don’t think the way you think.
The way you work isn’t the way I work.”
“For as the sky soars high above earth,
so the way I work surpasses the way you work,
and the way I think is beyond the way you think.”
Isaiah 55:8-9

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