No.292. Thanksgiving and my Perspective.

Colours of the Rainbow > Thanksgiving > No.292. Thanksgiving and my Perspective.

In Revelation 4:1 the Apostle John is invited to “Come up here.” He is invited into the throne room of heaven in order to see and hear “What must take place”. The implication being that he would not be able to grasp or comprehend what was going to happen, except he saw it all unfold from heaven’s perspective.

There have been others like John who have been as it were ‘taken to heaven’, and who have seen into that realm, but for most of us, although we can ‘in our spirits’ discern heavenly things, heaven itself is an unseen realm that we will not encounter until we die. Never the less I believe that the Lord wants us to ‘see’ things, more and more, from a heavenly perspective. To see His hand on our lives and His dealings with us. To see His heart of love for ourselves and others, and to see how He works out His plans and purposes in the middle of the chaos that there seems to be all around us on the earth at this time.

So often we need ‘vision’ to see things like God does, or even to see the spiritual realities that are all around us, like Elisha’s servant. The situation was that the king of Aram, fed up with the fact that Elisha kept telling the King of Israel, by word of knowledge, what the King of Aram was planning privately in his bedroom, had ordered the capture of Elisha. He had sent horses and chariots to surround the city of Dothan where Elisha was. The servant on getting up in the morning saw that the city was surrounded, and quite understandably panicked saying “Oh, my lord what shall we do?”

Elisha said “Don’t be afraid, those who are with us are more are more than those who are with them.” Then he prayed a simple prayer, “O Lord open his eyes that he might see”, and of course he does see. He sees the hills full of horses and chariots of fire. 2 Kings 6:8-18. Not many people have had their spiritual eyes opened in this way, although we have heard recently of friends – missionaries in what is now a very dangerous country for Christians – who know that they have, and have actually seen their angelic protectors. For most of us, however, having our perspective altered from an earthly one to a heavenly one is less dramatic but equally important.

I think we have stated many times throughout this year that thanksgiving is the key that unlocks the gate into that heavenly realm, it opens the way into God’s presence, Psalm 100 vs 4, and it can also open up our spirit to ‘hear’ and commune with the Holy Spirit, to begin to ‘see’ what God is up to in our lives. This is the sentiment expressed in a wonderful song on the Bethel album ‘Be lifted High’.

It begins ‘God I look to you, I won’t be overwhelmed. Give me vision to see things like you do. God I look to you, you’re where my help comes from, give me wisdom, you know just what to do.’ The song ends with the words, ‘Hallelujah our God reigns’. At one point in the middle, the singer Jenn Johnson encourages, ‘Thanks and Praise, Thanks and Praise’, and that surely is the key to transitioning from ‘God I look to you and I won’t be overwhelmed’ to being able to make that declaration ‘My God reigns’. I know that has been the case for me on many occasions.

John, the same one who was caught up into heaven to ‘see what must take place’, wrote to some early Christians about those who were carrying the spirit of antichrist. He encourages them with these words, ‘You dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world’. 1 John 4:4. It’s a verse we have probably all used at some point to encourage ourselves or others. Thanking God that this really is the truth, will help us to believe it.

So whether we feel that we are in a battle that is spiritual like those Christians that John was addressing, or physical like Elisha, or whether we are just feeling confused and uncertain about things in our own life and family, let us ‘give thanks’ for it will surely lift our gaze to heaven. Thanksgiving will direct our hearts to the love and power of God in our lives, Psalm 62:11,12, and allow the Holy Spirit to fill our minds and hearts with truth and with God’s perspective on whatever it is that is causing us concern.


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