Perspective can change a lot. With the impending polar vortex barreling our way, weather forecasters have us on edge with every update. People are preparing for the end of the world. As a Geography teacher, I can’t help but chuckle a little at our limited perspective. In Yakutsk, Russia in Eastern Siberia, the warmest it will be in the next 10 days is -25 degrees Fahrenheit! That’s the warmest it gets this time of year! That’s a city of more than 100,000 people.
Some of you may have seen the story of two 5-year-old girls who wondered outside on a -41 evening and were hospitalized there. So, I’m not downplaying the dangers of the temperatures heading our way. Cold is cold, but our perspective can change a lot. They live with those temperatures daily. So while the dangers of the cold don’t change, they have to figure out how to manage when it’s minus 40 with a wind-chill on top of it.
It made me think about the fact that while God doesn’t change, often our life experiences change the way we view God, feel about God or how we interact with him. We each face our own challenges in life. We have an enemy in Satan who wants us to feel like every challenge we encounter is the worst thing that could happen and that others don’t go through the same things.
The beauty of our God is that while we all bring a different perspectives, different life experiences and different perceptions about who he is. It doesn’t change who God is ultimately. In the same way folks in Siberia go about their business daily in temps half what will shut our city down, how can we choose to continue living in the midst of difficult times? It’s our perspective. God brought this verse to mind this morning:
2 Corinthians 4:8 says “As we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.”
Let’s keep our perspective ever on the eternal in our lives. Even the cold will be “transient.”