Climbing High to See God’s Elevated Perspective

Climbing High to See God’s Elevated Perspective

     Have you ever climbed up to a higher elevation so that you could gain a broader perspective? I vividly recall a cool, crisp morning several years ago during our second year of in-residence Way Corps training. My wife and I double-checked our backpacks to make sure we had all the items needed for the dynamic learning adventure ahead, one I would never forget. This adventure was a hike in the Colorado Rockies to the top of a mountain called Redcloud, whose peak rose 14,034 feet above sea level.
     At the start of this adventure our perspective was limited. All we could see was the trail before us, the clear blue sky above, and a wall of trees towering on both sides of us. As we ascended the mountain trail, we occasionally stopped to observe how remarkably our perspective had changed. After several hours of hiking at a brisk pace, we started to see the tops of those same trees that had once towered over us. Continuing our ascent, we saw mountain streams and acres of terrain that we could not see at the beginning of our adventure. By the time we reached the peak of Redcloud, our once-limited perspective had turned into a vantage point from which we could see clearly for many miles.
     As God’s children, we can seek those things which are above, in our thoughts and actions. This enables us to see things from God’s elevated perspective. To help us do this, let’s begin our own learning adventure: we’ll see from God’s Word what it means to seek an elevated perspective, how we can set our affection on things above, and what the benefits are of doing so.
     Let’s begin by letting God’s Word define what it means to seek an elevated perspective.
Colossians 3:1 and 2:
If [Since] ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
     In verse 1 the word “seek” means to look for or strive to find. Have you ever lost something? I have. And when I’m searching to find that lost item, I put all my energy and effort into finding it until it is recovered. To “seek” in this verse is not an occasional thought or attempt—this seeking requires perseverance.
     “Things…above” refers to heavenly things. This is God’s perspective. We put forth a sustained effort and exertion to seek God’s perspective in our lives from His powerful Word. Since God is the Author of all life, doesn’t it make sense that we would want to seek for His elevated perspective in our lives so that we can prevail? With determination we search the Scriptures and find the knowledge of God so that we can vividly see things from His vantage point.
Proverbs 2:1 and 5:
My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee;
Then shalt thou understand the fear [respect] of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God.
     To see God’s Word and His promises manifested in our daily lives, we can take action to climb higher in our hearts and minds with the greatness of His Word. An electrifying record that clearly and dynamically illustrates this point is found in Luke, chapter 19.
Luke 19:3 and 4:
And he [Zacchaeus] sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press [crowd], because he was little of stature.
And he ran before [ahead of where Jesus was walking], and climbed up into a sycomore tree to see him: for he [Jesus] was to pass that way.
     In Volume V of Studies in Abundant Living, Order My Steps in Thy Word, we read:

Since Zacchaeus could not see Jesus because of the crowd and his size, he climbed up into a sycamore fig tree to see him. Jesus came along, surrounded by masses of people, stopped, and said, “Hi, Zacchaeus. It’s wonderful that you are looking for me. Come down now. I’m going to your house with you.”

     Like Zacchaeus, we can take aggressive action—we can climb higher in our hearts and minds with the greatness of God’s Word.
     We have seen from the Word what it means to seek an elevated perspective. Now let’s take an even closer look at Colossians 3 where God’s Word teaches us how to “set our affection” on things above.
Colossians 3:1 and 2:
If [Since] ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
     “Set…affection on” is one Greek word, phroneō, which here means “to mind.” This means to direct one’s mind to a thing. We are to direct our minds to things above. It also means to seek for, to strive for. We direct our minds to seek for God’s perspective. This scripture clearly states for us to not direct our minds, our thoughts, to the things of the earth. Instead, we can make deliberate decisions to redirect our minds to God’s powerful Word and gain His elevated perspective….

This is an excerpt from the July/August 2011 issue of The Way Magazine.
Copyright© 2011 by The Way International. All rights reserved.
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