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In Need of a Little Perspective

As many of you know, one of my all-time favorite books is The Noticer, by Andy Andrews.  In it, Andy shares about experiences with a mysterious man (I’d say angel) named Jones…known for being able to offer fresh perspective on life.  I’ve read the book five times, and each time, I get something new out of it.  I love how God uses the power of story to teach us lessons.

Lately, I’ve been challenged by a few issues and needed some fresh perspective. I spent time with one of my mentors and walked away from that discussion with a whole new outlook on things.  Here are a few of my takeaways from that much-needed conversation:

1. Never, ever underestimate your power in encouraging others-We know the power of community.  The power of prayer. The power of faith.  But we often forget the power of an encouraging word.  Life was spoken into me when I heard “there is no one more capable of fixing this situation than you.”  Having people in our corner isn’t only wonderful–it’s necessary. A lot of people have gone further than they thought they could because someone else believed in them.

2. Be willing to learn-When we begin to struggle with a situation, there’s usually something involved where we don’t want to give in, don’t want to let go, or are unwilling to see the other side.  When I saw how I can learn not just one thing, but several things, my whole attitude changed because I’m not losing…I am actually gaining, as long as I’m willing to look for the lessons.

3. We can’t base our self-assurance on the whims others- Ever feel like you go around the Same mountain over and over (and over) again?  I don’t consider myself a people-pleaser, but I do need to have wins, and do fall prey to caring too much what others think (and judging my actions too carefully). Carrying the weight of our own expectations can be exhausting.   It’s so much easier when we remind ourselves that God is our strong tower. Our provider. And that He has a plan for us. Jeremiah 29:11

4. Be thankful, even on the hard days-Isn’t it amazing how being thankful for the good things in our lives helps overshadow the tough patches?  Even on my worst days, I still have a job that I love, a roof over my head, friends and family who keep me grounded, and a Father who adores me.  We are truly blessed.

What thoughts do you run back to when a little perspective is needed?

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6 Responses to “In Need of a Little Perspective”

  1. Jason February 17, 2011 at 7:30 am #

    I loved your point one. People desire to receive the encouraging words of others but tend to be stingy in giving it. What’s interesting is that giving it many times is just as fulfilling as receiving it.

  2. JenDeshler February 17, 2011 at 7:51 am #

    Jason, you’re so right. It’s like the Coke commercials…a kindness to us makes us want to pass it on.

  3. iron mike barrow February 17, 2011 at 8:18 am #

    A very timely post for many of us to take to heart and try to incorporate into our daily lives. It’s funny how that sometimes that even the tiniest act of encouragement can change someones day. We unfortunately are usually too wrapped up in ourselves and our own agenda. Also being thankful and showing every manner of gratitude is critical…it reminds us that if not for daily grace and mercy from God we would indeed find ourselves in some dark places.

    • JenDeshler February 17, 2011 at 8:42 am #

      You are So right! And I’m going to try to be better about those little words of encouragement. They go a Long way in helping others.

  4. Cara Putman February 24, 2011 at 8:39 pm #

    Great post and reminder to be an encourager. I want to breath life into others with my words.

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