Perspective Matters

As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
1 Peter 2:4‭-‬5 ESV

Perspective–the way we see things–matters. Two people can be watching the same event, but if the perspective from which each of them views it is different, then the descriptions they give about the event will differ as well. Think about those who referee NFL football games. There are times two well-qualified referees view the same play yet make opposing calls. Does this make one referee better than the other? Not in the least. It just demonstrates that different perspectives change what we see. One ref could have been looking at the backside of the play and thus did not see the ball touch the ground, so he called a catch. The other ref may have been on the front side of the play, so he viewed the ball hit the ground and thus called incomplete. Both made accurate calls from their individual perspectives, but their individual perspectives were not the same.

Now look at the verse above. Christ is called the Living Stone. Yet not everyone esteemed Him precious. He was despised and rejected by man. Yet He was loved by God. Throughout Jesus’s life people questioned Him, ridiculed Him, and accused Him of being a liar and a blasphemer.  They did not understand Him and did not like Him. The religious leaders of the day did not want Jesus to be the one in charge, for they assumed Jesus was there to take away what they had. From their perspective, Jesus was a threat, so they killed Him.

But Jesus did not come to take away; Jesus came to give–to give them what they so desperately needed. From God’s perspective, Jesus was chosen. Jesus was precious.

Yet Jesus was rejected by man. Same person. Same actions. Yet viewed from different perspectives.

Now look at verse five. Who else does the Bible say is like a living stone?

You.

Yes, you. As God’s child, you are a living stone–a living stone God is using to build His Kingdom. You are “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession…” (1 Peter 2:9). You are precious in the sight of God.

Does this mean everyone you come across will love you? Not in the least. Actually, it may be the very opposite. Because you are precious in the sight of God, because you are God’s child, and because He is using you, many people may not like you. They may view you in the same way they viewed Jesus: a threat they must despise, reject, and attempt to remove.

Yet the rejection of man does not change who you are. Regardless of what man may say and what man may do, you are God’s beloved, and you are God’s instrument of righteousness on this Earth. God has designed you to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

Acceptable to God, not man.

So walk like who you really are today: God’s child. Walk in the light. Be a light. Remember the words of Jesus:

“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 5:14‭-‬16 ESV)

Remember also these words: “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. (John 15:18‭-‬19 ESV)

Keep the right perspective today: God’s perspective. And sees yourself as God sees you: chosen, precious, beloved, and called. Called by God to love Him and to love people, even (and especially) when people don’t don’t understand and don’t love you back.

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