It is a phrase I find myself repeating often, especially during the challenging times we face today: Perspective is everything!
Be it the breakdown of society or the looming threat of the corona virus, it would be easy to give way to fear. That is why I was grateful to see this excerpt from an essay written by C.S. Lewis posted on Facebook. While Lewis wrote about living in an atomic age, his perspective can be applied by Christians equally well to how we reflect Christ in our lives during challenging times such as these. To be run by fear rather than to live daily in faith, is to be dominated by uncertainty. I offer this in the hope that Lewis’s wisdom will encourage you as it did me:
“In one way we think a great deal too much of the atomic bomb. How are we to live in an atomic age?” I am tempted to reply: “Why, as you would have lived in the sixteenth century when the plague visited London almost every year, or as you would have lived in a Viking age when raiders from Scandinavia might land and cut your throat any night; or indeed, as you are already living in an age of cancer, an age of syphilis, an age of paralysis, an age of air raids, an age of railway accidents, an age of motor accidents.”
In other words, do not let us begin by exaggerating the novelty of our situation. Believe me, dear sir or madam, you and all whom you love were already sentenced to death before the atomic bomb was invented: and quite a high percentage of us are going to die in unpleasant ways. We had, indeed, one very great advantage over our ancestors—anaesthetics; but we have that still. It is perfectly ridiculous to go about whimpering and drawing long faces because the scientists have added one more chance of painful and premature death to a world which already bristled with such chances and in which death itself was not a chance at all, but a certainty.
This is the first point to be made: and the first action to be taken is to pull ourselves together. If we are all going to be destroyed by an atomic bomb, let that bomb when it comes find us doing sensible and human things—praying, working, teaching, reading, listening to music, bathing the children, playing tennis, chatting to our friends over a pint and a game of darts—not huddled together like frightened sheep and thinking about bombs. They may break our bodies (a microbe can do that) but they need not dominate our minds.”*
“Now faith is the assurance of what we hope for
and the certainty of what we do not see.”
“I will praise the Lord, who counsels me;
even at night my heart instructs me.
I keep my eyes always on the Lord.
With Him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”
“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen.
For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
2 Corinthians 4:18
All to His Glory!
*”On Living in an Atomic Age” by C. S. Lewis from the book, Present Concerns (pages 73-80).
I love this, Kathie! It’s a great reminder to focus on what it means to be human. We can truly have peace in the middle of the storm. Thanks for keeping our minds and hearts on the Lord of the Word. ❤️
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Thank you, Kathie. ❤️
Thank you, CS Lewis . . .🙂
Thank you, Kathie. I read this on FB earlier today and find it just as helpful now. So many changes taking place and Satan is having a heyday but I am delighting in God’s faithfulness as we live each day. My dear Japanese friend has MS and so can’t come to our classes due to her compromised immunity system but she came today to my house to read the Bible and we talked about this quote. God’s blessing, dear friend, as you continue to encourage us with your words.
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Thank you very much Kathy for helping us stay focused on our Savior and the promise that He is in control. I have been praying now for several days regarding my upcoming surgery on the 18th. Although it is major & necessary, it is not an emergency. I have been led this afternoon to postpone the surgery. The discomfort is tolerable & I do not want to jeopardize Allen’s health. I thank God for his guidance & my hope lives in Him. Amen
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As I often say, “God’s timing is perfect.” I believe that this applies here, with the postponement of your surgery. I so appreciate your example, Gail, of leaning on the Lord to help you make your decision. Love you!
I am always grateful to hear from you, Liz. You’re right, Satan is having a heyday, but God will always get the last laugh. Praying for God’s continued watch care one you and Paul and giving thanks for the way He opens doors to spend time with special family and friends such as yours. What a precious God we love and serve . . .❤️
Kathie, My sister sent me this same message, and also this one from Martin Luther that you might like. “Whether One May Flee From a Deadly Plague”. “You ought to think this way: “Very well, by God’s decree, the enemy has sent us poison and deadly offal. Therefore, I shall ask God mercifully to protect us. Then I shall fumigate, help purify the air, administer medicine, and take it. I shall avoid places and persons where my presence is not needed in order not to become contaminated and thus perchance infect and pollute others, and so cause their death as a result of my negligence. If God should wish to take me, he will surely find me and I have done what He has expected of me and so I am not responsible for either my own death or the death of others. If my neighbor needs me, however, I shall not avoid place or person, but will go freely.”
Thanks, Ellen–excellent fare to think through and apply in these challenging times!