What I Learned: Perspective Is Everything

Editor’s note: At the end of each month, the editorial team shares a brief wrap-up of how that month’s content encouraged and challenged us. This month, Michael Gregory wrote about how he was both encouraged and challenged by one particular post at the beginning of May: a reflection on Psalm 34 focused on the security and safety we find as we simply look to God.


Perspective is everything.  My Cup Overflows helped me to experience what I know to be intellectually true about how God sees me. I know he is gentle. I know he delivers me. I know that he covers my shame. But I desperately needed to hear these truths from a different perspective.

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“My Cup Overflows can relate to the stress, fear, and anxiety that King David was facing in Psalm 34 to a much greater degree than I can. And the result? A greater conviction that Jesus protects, covers, adores and blesses his beloved.

When I heard these glorious truths preached from my friends either from the pulpit or behind the table in the coffee shop, it’s beautiful, and I need it every time. But these truths also take on a different meaning when they’re preached from someone walking through situations that I myself am not accustomed to. When I read how My Cup Overflows clings to these gospel promises, and how she shares them with such joy and conviction, they landed differently to me precisely because of her perspective.

She can relate to the stress, fear, and anxiety that King David was facing in Psalm 34 to a much greater degree than I can. And the result? A greater conviction that Jesus protects, covers, adores and blesses his beloved. And this gift (if I can be so bold as to qualify it as such from my much more comfortable perspective) that My Cup Overflows has received has not ended with her.

Gen. 12:2-3 reads, in part: “I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing…in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” Because she has been blessed to be a blessing, I also received a gift this month.


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God used the words and experience of My Cup Overflows to expose my own hearts’ deep desires. What am I really doing or trusting in to feel secure? Where am I minimizing or simply overlooking my own sin because I’m not placing my trust in the God of Psalm 34? 

Growth comes through suffering. More specifically, growth in Jesus comes through suffering. For a number of reasons, Western Christians tend to be malnourished in this area compared to our brothers and sisters in other parts of the world. 

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“Just as we are blessed by the story of believers who struggled and were delivered by the mighty hand of their Savior under Egyptian Pharaohs and Roman emperors, we need to be shaped by modern-day martyrs and the oppressed.

Stories move people. It’s why we go to the movies and lose ourselves in a good novel. As God’s children, we are invited into the story all the great stories point to. Just as we are blessed by the story of believers who struggled and were delivered by the mighty hand of their Savior under Egyptian Pharaohs and Roman emperors, we need to be shaped by modern-day martyrs and the oppressed. We are all a part of the same story. The Story.

My Cup Overflow’s reflection on Psalm 34 was a call to prayer, a call to reflection, and a call to worship. And it wouldn’t have happened without suffering, or the conviction that we are blessed to be a blessing.


Michael Gregory is a church planter in the Los Angeles area.

 

FOR PRAYER AND REFLECTION

Pray that believers around the world will allow their suffering to help them grow more into the image of Christ, the Suffering Servant.

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God's Love in Trials: A Letter of Encouragement
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A Chinese Immigrant’s Reflection on American Holidays
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