Saturday, November 24, 2012

A New Perspective

The Augarten on a foggy morning run
Our temporary apartment in Vienna is right next to a gigantic park. I have absolutely love being so close to a green space full of paths and trails where I can run a few times a week. Since arriving here in October, I quickly got into the habit of heading over to the Augarten regularly and running two times around the perimeter, always running counter clockwise for some reason. I suppose I'm a "creature of habit".

But this week, I decided to switch it up and run the opposite direction. It changed my world! I noticed things about the park that I had never seen before, like interesting plants, buildings I hadn't seen, pathways, and hidden nooks and crannies. I felt like I was running through a completely different space.

As I was running, I began pondering this new perspective I had on the park and how it often parallels my perspective in life. When facing new challenges, I tend to harken back to old habits and approach them with the same opinions and perspectives I've had before. I make assumptions and follow routine. But there is so much value in stepping back and allowing space for a different perspective, even on a situation or challenge that seems familiar.

God is faithful to His promises and character - this we can depend on. However, I believe God is not a God of habit. We see throughout scripture that He works in the world and in people's lives in a LOT of different ways; He takes people of all shapes, sizes, colors, perspectives and ages and uses them to accomplish His purposes here on earth. God is not predictable! So when I assume that I know what He's doing and take on the same perspective I always have, I don't leave room to see how God might be working from a different angle this time...or trying to teach me something new.

Sometimes in order to hear God speak or move ahead in a difficult situation, you need to step back, turn around or head in the opposite direction to see things from a new perspective.

What situation do you need to look at from a different angle?

Photo credit: Alex Gewessler