The beauty of our life is magnified before God when we are fulfilling the purpose for which we were created. That purpose often requires us to take a stand, to dare to be different, and trust that God will use it to bring glory to himself.
On Thursday, I wrote about my little tree who is the first to change color in the fall, acting as the start of a new season. And interestingly enough, our Pastor brought out a couple of examples of people who had actually been imprisoned for the facts their research had discovered. They dared to be different and actually started change, although it wasn’t quick or easy. Sometimes we need to be aware that unlike the tree who simply changed color ushering in fall painlessly and quickly, sometimes being different can cause a fight, a struggle or an uncomfortable situation. But that too, can be necessary in the process.
Take Galileo for example. He discovered the fact that the sun was the center of the universe. But that was so far out from what was believed at that time that the people ridiculed him and the church convicted him of heresy. He spent the rest of his life under house arrest. Back then, in the 1600’s, the common belief held by the catholic church was that the sun orbited around the earth.
“The Church had decided the idea that the Sun moved around the Earth was an absolute fact of scripture that could not be disputed, despite the fact that scientists had known for centuries that the Earth was not the center of the universe.”
But the change in thinking was necessary and brought about all kinds of other cool discoveries as time went on.
And look at Ignaz Semmelweis. He uncovered the facts that brought about proper hygiene protocol in hospitals in the 1800’s. Although he was not imprisoned for what he discovered, he was ridiculed and abused for his beliefs simply because he could not prove them by science. It went so far beyond the common beliefs at the time that he took lots of flack for what he had discovered. Germ theory was not proven until some 20 years later by Louis Pasteur, but by then he had met an untimely death. But the change eventually brought about a cleaner, healthier environment that no doubt saved countless lives and ultimately allowed for the medical advancements that we have benefited from as time has passed.
That’s why the term is dare to be different. We really don’t know what will come of the stand we are taking both in the immediate future or in the long term. The beauty of it is that it requires obedience and trust in God because only he knows the part it will play now and in the future.
As John Piper says, we often only view life through a narrow lens, seeing the here and now, but God views things through the wide lens, seeing how the here and now fits into eternity past and eternity future. The part that blows my mind is that all the good and the bad, the struggles and the pain, the discoveries and the joy all bring the same result- His glory.
I don’t know about you, but that sure inspires me to seek and maintain an attitude of christian patience. When we view our struggles in the light of them ultimately bringing God glory in some way and we understand that there is purpose beyond the here and now of the road we are walking, it becomes easier to bear what has been brought to our life.
This morning, there was a beautiful fog that settled over our pond. It seems that sometimes life is like that, shrouded in mystery. The fog created a beautiful scene in the same way that the beauty of our life lived fulfilling His purpose creates a stunning scene for our Lord as he looks down through his wide lens.