Wednesday, July 9, 2008

20/20 Vision


Don't we all desire 20/20 vision? Fortunately, if we don't have it naturally we can get it with visual aids. We can correct our poor vision with glasses, contacts, or surgery. Even those with more profound visual impairments or even blindness can aid their sight with canes, sight-seeing dogs, and the acceleration of other senses. What about our spiritual vision? How can we perfect that? Or can we? We can enhance what we see and how we see it (perspective) with reading of God's Word, prayer, fellowship and accountability with other Christians. Unlike the near perfect physical vision we can regain with the aid of other devices, we can never gain near perfect spiritual vision and perspective. Our perspective and vision is so much less than that of God. Though we can strive to increase and perfect our spiritual vision, it will never be 20/20, which is only held by our Lord.

The only way for us to obtain 20/20 vision or perspective is through hindsight. We've got to go through it and then turn, look back and have that ah-ha moment. Our vision and our perspective are what can cause us so much grief. In the midst of trials, circumstances, and suffering, we question why. We try to figure it out. We try to guess the reasoning. All to no avail.

My words are feeble so let me share something that so simply yet so profoundly happened to me. Yes, it involves that dog gone little tech-y box...the ol' laptop computer.

Last Thursday, I admit I was a little excited to post on Friday about Dependence Day. I, as normal, like to be different. I call it unique. I wanted to play on the word dependence versus our national holiday of independence. I was almost to the very end of composing it when my computer beeped at me. How dare it. It froze. It crashed. It was never revived by this inexperienced techy. How poignant that I had just typed about being dependent on God. Just knowing that God was going to fix my computer, I didn't make plans on Friday or Saturday to take it to the doctor (Best Buy Store). "No, I'm going to wait it out" I thought to myself. "Why else would God allow me not to post my Dependence Day piece on Independence Day. It's not going to mean as much to post it after the 4th." Yes, these were my crazy thoughts. "This is a test." I thought as I continued to try to rational the reason. It was only at that time that I realized I needed to also include prayer for computers along with keys, etc. Then, I thought maybe God wants me to spend a couple days with Him and no computer.

Okay, after almost 48 hours, I realized that God was not going to come down and magically poof my computer to life. Oh, the dread. A trip 60 minutes south the the 'puter doctor. I called and explained the systems of the poor thing. We figured it was either the operating system or the hard drive. Oh, ugg. Here we go...on a long trip and then trying to find something to do for five hours for them to fix it. Oh, what would I ever do. Shop? I had just been shopping for those "much needed" items of which not a one fit, you know, shorts, capris, etc. I was content on making the trip and was going to treat myself to the salad and breadsticks and Olive Garden while I pondered on God's Word.

I dropped off the computer and decided to just return home because it was very unlikely they'd finish my computer by closing time (five hours). Upon leaving my lap box there, I was informed it would cost $99 to first save all my data which is merely pictures and some documents but my 30+ page devotional manuscript was one of the items. That would take hours to recreate. Dumb me. If only I had thought to save everything onto a CD or better yet flash drive. Okay. So we know I'm going to pay $99 for my data. Then, he says, if it's the hard drive it is still under the one-year warranty and it will be free. If it's the operating system, it will cost $199. Okay. Well, we can pray for the hard drive to be bad. Also, if they replace the hard drive the new one will be faster and larger than the manufacturer's one. Oh yes, now we are really praying for a bad hard drive. (haha)

I earnestly prayed for the cheap route which coincidentally would be the most beneficial. I was not worried but had somewhat of a sense of confidence looking back onto it. As I spoke with one of the geeks (yes, the men who fix your computers at Best Buy are called The Geek Squad and they even have vehicles with the logo on it)...so, as I spoke with the geek on the phone Monday morning I asked if it was the hard drive or operating system and he so beautifully said, "I believe it is your hard drive because I see your computer right here with the hard drive removed and a new one beside." Oh beautiful geek, you blessed my heart.

Yay! So of course I sang praises upon praises to my Lord. Knowing that $199 could so much be better used anywhere but on a computer. My heart sung, not because I was getting a FREE and better hard drive with no cost to me, but because I know it was my Lord who performed that mighty work. I know He did it for me. I just know it. It wasn't that He wanted to save me 199 bucks but that He wanted to bless me with the reassurance of what I had just written. Just to "see" Him work in my life, no matter the size of the issue, was a blessing. It was just such a blessing. I cannot stop smiling from thinking about how much He loves me to do the little things for me.

Fast forward, yes I made another long trip down south 60 miles to pick up the lap box. I arrived there and said "I'm here to pick up my baby." No joke. A little humor. It did seem odd not having instant access to the web, email, etc. for those five days. A geek (remember he is what he is) did the paper work, handed me the lap box and said there you go. I said, "oh what about my data disc?" He said it was in the folder. I asked "Well, is there a cost for that?" He said, "no, that's just what we do."

I was floored. Floored, I tell ya. I had to pick up some other things one of which is a flash drive to save, save, save everything. I tell ya, Best Buy has geeks every where. They just let them roam around the store. Which is very nice because they are always asking if they can assist us wondering customers. (Unlike some stores...not mentioning any names.)

So, needless to say it almost took the full 60-minute drive home to get my chin off the floor board. I'm still shocked. Here I went into this thinking okay max $300+ and minimum $100. But God says no, $0. Yes, it did cost me a half of tank of gas which is about $25. That's cheap for a new hard drive though.

Back to the point of all this gibberish...I remember last Friday when I was a little uneasy wondering why oh why did my new computer crash. I pondered on the trip down there, the potential cost, how long I'd be without the computer, finding the time to make these trips. I really tried to reflect on what the Lord could be saying and doing by allowing this crash of my computer. I really wanted to see Him in this situation and what, if anything, He wanted me to do or how He wanted me to reflect on this. I couldn't see the point of this simple thing causing such an imposition not to mention my disappointment in not getting to post on the 4th.

I see now that posting on the 4th wasn't all that necessary. The meaning of my Dependence Day post still resonated into the hearts of the readers. It still made the point regardless of the actual day of posting.

I see now that the trips were long but also productive as I also added other needed tasks to the trip so they weren't solely for the computer. It was also nice to just be on the road with the Lord in prayer and music.

I see now that the Lord delights in providing for me, even in the most unnecessary things.
If the LORD delights in a man's way, he makes his steps firm. Psalm 37:23

I see now that the Lord wanted to reaffirm in my heart that He does care about ever detail of my life.
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7 Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall. Psalm 55:22

I see now that He did do this mighty work for me. O Sovereign LORD, you have begun to show to your servant your greatness and your strong hand. For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do the deeds and mighty works you do? Deuteronomy 3:24

I see now that any work of the Lord's is a miracle. He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted. Job 9:10

I see now that the Lord used a computer to open my eyes to see Him working in my life.
You saw with your own eyes what the LORD did (at Baal Peor). Deuteronomy 4:3

I see now that the vision of the Lord working in my life is greater than any monetary savings I could receive.

I see now that no matter how hard we try, we will never have 20/20 spiritual vision nor will we ever have 20/20 perspective. Our perspective will always be a human perspective and it can never be a God perspective. We can never see the perspective from His viewpoint, which expands all of time.

Is there something in your life that you just don't understand? Is a situation going terribly wrong? Can you not figure out the point of an issue? Are you trying and seem to get no where? Try to step back and see that God has the full perspective and only He knows the usefulness of what seems so useless.

Kelley at Aroma of Joy shared about her inability to lose weight after her seventh child and how God has used that and her love for running. It really touched my heart to see God using "menial" things to change, touch, perfect, mold us. It's not about the end result. It's not about the goal. It's not about the final destination. It's about the journey and the process along the way.

Expand your perspective. Realize it will never be what God's is. Strive for better spiritual vision. Look for Him and His ways. You will find Him. But if from there you seek the LORD your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart and with all your soul. Deuteronomy 4:29

"And Jesus said, 'Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?" John 11:40

Expanding My Perspective,

33 comments:

Tammy Nischan said...

I am sorry that I do not get to your site as often as I should. You are a blessing to me life, and I always smile when I hear from you.

You are a great writer and a great encourager!

You have a gift for knowing just what to say.

God Bless Your Week in Amazing Ways,
Tammy

PS Thank you for every prayer for Nick.

Joyfulsister said...

"Praise The Lord" I am rejoicing and doing the Happy dance with *U*

Hugz Lorie

Edge of Design said...

I'm still trying to get over the $99 charge to back up your data. It's taking advantage of folks because it takes just a few minutes. You can always replace hardware and software applications but its essential to back up your data frequently.

annette said...

Great post! And I love the title....

Annette

Nicole said...

Paula,

I don't know if I've ever commented on your blog but found out about you from Rachel's blog. I am praying for you today as I have been impressed to do so. I am sensing an intense hurt and possible loneliness. I don't know exactly why the Lord has impressed me to prayer but I have done so in obedience. May you be blessed with his love and grace this day.

Blessings,
Nicole

Jenn @ Casa de Castro said...

Yay for geeks! AND yay for GOD! I love how He ministers to us and provides for us in ways we never expect.

Thanks for another great post. Have an awesome day in the Lord!

GOD'S LADIE said...

Another great post! Praise GOD!
LaTonya

Kelley said...

Paula,
I know all too well the "dependence" on computers and the frustration when they break down. I am glad you got yours up and running again and were able to find blessings in the process! Take care and enjoy your day....

Kim said...

Friend...you TRULY touch my heart each and everytime I visit.

WOW...you are great writer, and God truly speaks through you!!!!

Now computer problems....ugh!

Be blessed,
Kim~

andi said...

Glad it worked out and cheaply at that! :)

Dancin' Wallflower said...

Enjoyed your blog!! Will come back and visit again!! I'm a first-timer to your blog!!
Kim

Runner Mom said...

Your blog is breathtaking with its vibrant colors and gorgeous pictures!! Oh, my word!

Love your post! The computer and I have a love/hate relationship!! I feel your pain!!!

The scriptures that you included were some that I needed to hear today. Thanks so much, my friend!
Blessings,
Susan

JnL4God said...

Paula,
Great post. I really related to this one because two weeks ago we dealt with this issue also, only ours was the Mother board and it wasn't savable :( . You are really doing great with your writing. It's very uplifting for many, that should make you happy. :)
Thanks for your comments on my blog. What did you mean it flags you when I post? How do you do that? Well I hope you are doing well. I see God shining in you He heals, and I see that in you.
Loves,
Lynn

HIS Daughter said...

Paula,

You spoke directly to my heart. Thank you for allowing HIM access through your life and heart to bless others with easy words and those we need to hear.

How awesome when HE uses those that are willing to be lovely and timely.

Blessings Sweetheart,
Teri

tiggerdaisy said...

Good stuff! What a great post! It has so many lessons!!! You have certainly blessed my heart today...thank you, thank you, thank you!

Prayers and Blessings,
Rebecca

p.s. I so love Best Buy!

Laura said...

I love a happy ending! It never amazes me the lengths God will go to to get through to us. I hope you enjoyed your "quality time' with Him while waiting on your baby to be repaired.
Still in my thoughts and prayers, Paula...

Wendy said...

Dear sisters,

Please visit my blog and help us pray for a 17-year-old girl who is currently battling for her life.

www.wendyblackwell.blogspot.com

I tearfully thank you all ahead of time.

Melanie said...

A great post, Paula! God does know what is best when we allow Him to show us the way, doesn't he?

Have a great weekend!

much2ponder said...

I almost forgot to read your post because I noticed it on a day when my time was limited, but then today I remembered to go back and read it. I am so glad I did. YOu are living out what I am asking the Lord to reveal to me. Thanks for sharing.

God's perspective...I need that more than anything. Even though I won't see all that he sees while I am here on hearth; I still ask him to show me what he sees in hopes that I will gain better understanding of myself and people in my life.

I need my heart to be connected with his in an intimate way in order to deal with everyday life. Praise the Lord he understands me better than I understand myself and he shows mercy. God is good!

Mia said...

No worries Paula! I read EVERY new post because they mean so much to me. I love your story of God's provision for you computer. I, too am a BIG fan of the Geek Squad! They have been good to me as well. Thank you,thank you for your sweet words on my "barrel" post. You have no idea what it means to me to know you took the time to do that...

Earthmommy said...

This was my first time visiting your blog and I LOVE IT. You are a very talented writer and insightful Christian! I found your blog thorugh a comment over at The Perch and I am adding you to my blogroll so I can come back and visit often.

Yolanda said...

Paula,

I loved this posting! Your writing grabbed me like the one you posted Are You Having An Affair?

I had a gentleman one day in Sunday School class confirm to me that there are some things that we are not to know. Goes along with that 20/20 vision. And his statement was....5 little words...My God Is In Control.

Beth Moore said once, God has our BEST interest at heart.

With that, if I don't know or can't seem to figure it out, it's because God doesn't want me to know. And I simply fold my hands and say, THANK YOU LORD, YOU HAVE MY BEST INTEREST AT HEART.

Love ya Paula,
Yolanda

skoots1mom said...

i love happy dances...they make great pics, too!
thanks for coming by...
recovery has been slow but I'm moving much better
got to go to church today!!
i've been enjoying my flowers especially during my limitations...God provides!

come again soon! have a great week upcoming : )

Tonja said...

What a deal...a great adventure, computer fixed and a revelation all at the same time! God sure is good to us, isn't He?

Sharon said...

Paula,
Yes god sure knows us best doesn't he. This was fantastic, needed this today, Thank You! You have so encouraged me today.
Glad ur puter is back and running, you know I just went through that and I was in panic's ville.
Huggggsss to you
Sharon

Nicole said...

Paula,

I just wanted to make sure you got my email that I sent a couple of days ago. I just received an email notice of someone commenting on my blog and it went to my junk mail because it didn't recognize the sender. I am just checking to make sure that did not happen in this case. Hope you are having a wonderful day.

Blessings and Hugs,
Nicole

Anonymous said...

Paula,

I really enjoy reading your blog. Thank you for allowing the Holy Spirit to use you in such a powerful way.

Blessings,

Kim

Tracy said...

Hello friend! Stop by when you have a chance. I've left you an award... = )

Laura said...

How are you, friend? You sound so well in your comments. I am glad. Thank you for your encouragement over at the Wellblog. Can't wait to here more from you.

Amy said...

Last night as I was crying out to God, my hindsight vision kicked in. God reminded me of all of the other trials that He had seen us through, and it helped me to see my current situation a little clearer.:)

God Bless,
Amy:)

Kristen said...

How many times have I uttered the words "hindsight is 20/20"

I just love that you can see how God is at work - even when it comes to our computers. Oh how I pray each and every person could see that God is in every aspect of our lives and He cares about every single detail. Great post! You are a blessing.
K

andi said...

Thanks Paula. :) I am in the process of fixing the addresses on my blog. I wondered why the time was off and thought it must be my computer. Thanks!

Joyfulsister said...

Hi Paula...
Wow for me the name that comforts me the most when I call upon him is Prince of peace. Lately I have been dwelling in his peace, resting in his presence, and basking in his glory, I've had a really stressful day today and I'm seeking shelter under his wings of peace. I

Hugz Lorie