People often bemoan the seeming disappearance of handymen, trades people, artisans, true craftsmen, etc. For my part, not meaning to boast, but I, with my skill set, do my utmost to keep them afloat (if the invoices for said valuable persons are any indication). If an appliance stops ‘appliancing,’ my first thought is that it needs to be replaced. The above-mentioned pros, on the other hand, see a slight adjustment needed to bring it back to its original functioning. If a computer is not cooperating, I see doom on the horizon, but techies, in several, lightning-fast keystrokes, restore the darkened screen again. If a car begins making a funny, disconcerting noise, the purchase of a new one is averted by the trusty mechanic (for a fee, of course). If a rabid dog at the church entrance has five big strapping men trapped inside, the animal control lady comes to collar him and stow him securely in the back of her work vehicle – in just under 45 seconds (she needn’t have grinned and saluted the 5 of us bravely staring out the window as she hopped back in, though). This names a few examples of my ongoing investment in the staving off of extinction of these important fellow citizens.
These examples highlight, for me, the importance of maintaining perspective. Beyond material things, perspective is critical when we’ve failed, when negative circumstances pile up, when health or finances are threatened, when sinful behavior blurs the face of Jesus. And when the enemy takes advantage of the above with distorting lies and insinuations (I’m sure it’s not just me).
The Gospel is Good News. The Good News is Jesus. And Jesus is our Perspective Maintenance Manager and Perspective Restorer Supreme. In the first four letters to the churches in Revelation, we’ve heard Jesus express tough love in disappointment and strong warnings. The ecstatic part for them, and for us, is that in each, there is an ‘after.’ The pathway back to intimacy, to renewed fellowship, is made clear. Jesus’ desire for his Bride is undiminished. He is the Lover of our Souls, the God of second chances – for all eternity. May we recall these truths when the next, um, situation calls for perspective. PD