Continued from here.
One final thought on a change in perspective… God used (of all things) a secular movie to teach me an important spiritual lesson. The movie Arrival is a science fiction story that asks a profound philosophical question: If you could see your entire life now and knew that your journey would bring lots of joy ending in pain, would you still choose it?
I absolutely would make the same choice is Louise Banks, the heroine of the story. I thought about how I would not change anything about my past, even the child abuse, because I know how it all turns out – with God healing my pain and using my past for good as I encourage others who are still in pain themselves.
I then thought about how the Bible provides us with the same gift that Louise received – the gift of knowing how it all turns out, although it’s the opposite of her story. Louise had to decide whether the joy was worth the painful ending while I must decide whether the daily challenges and struggles are worth the joy that God has promised in the end. The Bible promises us that God works all things together for good for those who love Him, which means that “good” is coming from the “bad” I am facing now. Might I, like Louise, be empowered to embrace the journey, both good and bad, if I really believe that God will work all for good?
Might this perspective be the secret to Jesus’ obedience? We are told in Hebrews that…
For the joy set before [Jesus] he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. ~ Heb. 12:2
There was nothing “joyful” about being mocked, beaten, and crucified, but Jesus knew that God would work even this out for good, so he embraced the journey. Might I also embrace the journey if I believe … really believe … that God will use even this [whatever I am struggling with or suffering from] for good?
So much to ponder. I don’t claim to have all of the answers yet, but I am enjoying the journey of asking the questions.
[Graphic: Cover of Arrival. Courtesy Amazon.]