I would like you to use your imagination for a few minutes. Imagine standing in the middle of time square in New York City on a crystal clear night and staring up into the sky. What do you see? What CAN you see, in spite of all the bright lights around you that dilute the night sky? A few stars perhaps, for although the night is clear, the sky is awash in the brightness of the city below. Now imagine being magically teleported to a far northern place, let’s say a cabin on a lake in Northern Canada, far from everything. After your eyes adjust to the darkness, you stare up into the sky, the exact same sky you looked up into at Time Square. What do you see? Not just a few stars, but thousands of stars, constellations. clouds of stars, until the night sky seems to be more light than darkness. The sky did not change, but your perspective did change.
Just like in this story, sometimes we have to be uprooted and replanted in order to see things from a different perspective. And I am not speaking of physically being moved, but of being willing to shed off an old way of thinking or seeing, to turn around, or change our mind and our heart, to be open to seeing things anew. This necessarily means a death to self or a giving over of our rigidity. Jesus invites us to move from one stage to another when he says, “Let me make this clear. A single grain of wheat will never be more than a single grain of wheat unless it drops into the ground and dies. Because then it sprouts and produces a great harvest of wheat, all because of one grain.” John 12:24 By being willing to die to seeing things through only one lens and being willing to change our perspective, we may be surprised to find how much more of the majesty of God we re able to see.
God’s majesty was present over the diluted sky of New York, but it was necessary for us to change our perspective, to move to a new way of seeing, in order to experience it in all of its glory. God’s love is even more real than the stars, close to us and surrounding us at all times. May we be willing to be set free of our clouded vision so that we might see it more abundantly.