©Joy Dunlap https://joydunlap.com
The Superior view was in front of me, but unconsciously I found myself looking instead at the manmade tile and walls boxing me in. When I discovered what they called a tepidarium at the ship’s stern while on our Great Lakes cruise, it appeared to be a perfect workout space for one. Larger and deeper than a bathtub and yet much smaller than a backyard pool, it was also warm when I dipped my foot in. Since no one was using it, I quickly changed into my bathing suit and entered the comforting water. Before me spread a spectacular view of Lake Superior.
As I began to run through frog jumps, rocking horses, jumping jacks, mermaids, cross-country skis, moguls, and other familiar water exercises, I was surprised to find myself turning toward the grills on either side of the mini pool, instead of looking out onto the beauty of the lake beyond and the sky above. After turning to the side to do stretches on the wall, I had unconsciously stayed facing the enclosures instead of looking out.
Instead of experiencing the wide-open view of the expansive Lake Superior, I limited the beauty I was exposed to by only looking at the walls on the sides of me.
That made me think about how we can limit our perspective and our view of God.
When we focus on walls, obstacles, and barriers that appear to contain us, we limit our concept and trust in God, and miss out on the delights He puts in our path.
How do we keep our eyes on God and not lose sight of the Wonder?
Look for Windows not Walls
In life, we sometimes center our sight on the walls around us instead of the wonder God puts in front of us. We can become so entrenched in seeing what holds us in that we miss experiencing the Superior One who started our World, and the breath of love and gifts God provides to us. When our attention is on the Light streaming in, we are more likely to feel God’s warmth, and to see the opportunities He makes available to us.
View God’s Limitless Reservoir
At times, we may focus on the limits in us and in our circumstances rather than looking to – and leaning into – the limitless power and love of God.
Instead of viewing the spectacular and vast body of the aptly named Lake Superior, part of the time I ended up with my eyes on the walls of a manmade-sized water box! How much grander it would have been – if during the entire time I was there – I had kept my eyes on the awesomeness of God’s creation and, more importantly, the Creator.
Our time on earth is so much more delightful when we keep our eyes on the Superior One and experience His wonders daily!
Watch that Routine Doesn’t Distract Us from the Royal
The routine of our days and what we’re doing has the potential to turn our attention away from the vast array of goodness and delight God offers us.
Initially, I didn’t even recognize that my gaze had moved away from the expansive body of water and sky. Suddenly I realized that instead of looking out, I was blocking myself in, seeing only what contained me. I was missing the delight of what was right in front of me! The magnificent view was an incredible gift, but I was wasting it by not keeping my gaze on it.
Today, if you’re feeling blocked in, without seeing a way forward, ask yourself if your gaze is on God and His faithfulness.
Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced. Psalm 105:4-5 NIV
If you’re feeling so caught up in routine that you’re feeling restless and discontent, dig deep to see if your gaze has shifted in such a way that the grandeur and goodness of God is less prominent.
And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3: 17b-19 NIV
And, if you’re feeling burdened, ill equipped, or unprepared for the tasks ahead of you, move your eyes off your limits, and focus on the limitless ability of God.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21 NIV
If it’s been a while since you basked in the wonder of God’s creation and all that He provides, choose the Superior view each day, and be grateful.
Whether you’ve seen Lake Superior or not, we all have the opportunity to know the One who is Superior, to benefit from His awe-inspiring creation, and to trust in His power and faithfulness. And, that view is the one worth keeping in our sight.
Your path led through the sea, your way through the mighty waters, though your footprints were not seen. Psalm 77:19 NIV
- What lake or body of water has given you good memories?
- What have you seen in the past week that reminded you of the power or love of God?
- When was the last time you paid more attention to the barriers in your life than the Superior One with the power to knock them down or lead you through them or around them?
- How can you shake up your routine so as to spend more time with God and see Him more clearly?
Mightier than the thunder of the great waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea—the Lord on high is mighty. Psalm 93:4 NIV
But my eyes are fixed on you, Sovereign Lord; in you I take refuge—do not give me over to death. Keep me safe from the traps set by evildoers, from the snares they have laid for me. Psalm 141:8-9 NIV
Life is Better When It’s Full – Joy-full, Thank-full, Purpose-full and Friend-full! ™