Consider your perspective…

Consider your perspective…

Reality and Perspective

before you allow your reality to be that of the masses.

What a wonderful and amazing Thanksgiving meal yesterday. For well over ten years now, I have been cooking holiday meals for family and friends, also known as ‘Friendsgiving,’ and have been blessed to serve over 65 people at one point a few years ago.

However, yesterday was quite different. Only a small group of friends were able to join in, and a host of those who RSVPed did not make it at all. Plus, it was a Thanksgiving without my kids being there. Seasonal illness, living far away, and some not-so-seasonal separation issues with two of my children still make the holidays feel a bit vacant.

While I shared holiday greetings over the phone and in text from my other two children, and I enjoyed the smaller group of friends and the great conversations we shared yesterday, I still found myself thinking and missing my two estranged children that have decided it is no problem to ignore the love and holiday greetings of their father.

With those thoughts being present, not only on Thanksgiving day but virtually every day of the year, I found comfort through God’s word concerning family separations, disagreements, and even ill will for many who are faced with similar family losses. I have even been truly blessed to be able to mentor other parents dealing with the pain of children that have walked away from their family relationships.

During these mentoring times, conversations almost always include thoughts like, ‘What did I do wrong?’ ‘Why do my children hate me, or simply want to hurt me in this way?’ While our reality is not the same as the reality of our children, in my mind, I find it impossible to understand the thought process in which a child—grown adult—simply one day decides to cut ties and all communications with their parent. At least I did until today.

This morning, I was reading in Luke Chapter 12. Jesus was speaking to His disciples, and in verses 51 through 53, He reminded them that He had come not to bring Peace but Division. This title in Chapter 12 was quite the eye-opener, since with me, I feel and receive nothing but God’s peace—the peace that only Jesus can provide.

However, Jesus was referring to the end times and the time in which even families would be divided. ‘From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, daughter against mother and mother against daughter…’

This division is not caused by the love, or lack thereof, between family members; it is caused by the lack of love they have for the Lord our God. God calls us to love one another, imperfect as we are, just as He loves us. If we did this, there would be no division within our family, and I am not speaking of conflict or disagreements; those things we will have until the end of time. What we do find through our love of Jesus, His peace and the saving grace we receive is two fold. One an open dialog with the family member, and two….. forgiveness.

MY PERSPECTIVE, up until today, has been that of a loving father. Not a perfect father, but truly a loving father of four children, each of whom I love dearly, am proud of each, and am respectful of each for who they have become in this world. Basically, I do not see any of my children differently, for each of them received a part of my heart as they came into this world and took their first breath.

However, my eyes were opened today as God’s words filled my heart and mind. Simply put, a light bulb went off in my head, and I could clearly see what the struggle is all about. In 2009, I entered my walk with God and spent some 7 years training for ministry work. All my children were already young adults and had chosen their paths. Today, two of my children are on their respective paths, which include their walk with God. The other two, both fun, intelligent, loving family/married men, are on their paths which do not include a relationship with God. Clearly, this was God’s warning to us in Luke 12:52-53.

While I am writing in part about the separation of family members through our individual sense of reality and perspective, this same philosophy applies to every relationship we have in the world today. Business, friendships, family, and community. We are not only divided and looking at the world through the lenses of our own reality, we can at the same time be listening to the wrong voices that are driving us further and further apart. The pandemic was the tipping point, the trigger if you will, for the division in the world allowing the good to see the evil oppression taking full root into our lives. So I wish to leave each of you with the following thought I had this morning.

The reality we live, is the reality within our mind, not the reality of the world around us. Consider your perspective only after you have allowed your eyes to be opened, clearly seeing and being present so that your thoughts are your own.

Wishing all my reader and your families a wonderful, healthy, happy and peaceful holiday season. Looking forward in seeing you all on the other side of 2023. ~ Wayne Warrington

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