Perspective

It is better to be of a lowly spirit with the poor
    than to divide the spoil with the proud.

Proverbs 16:19

According to wisdom – it is much better to hang out with the poor than to divvy out surplus with the rich and proud.

I read this verse the morning myself, along with 3 guys from FBC El Dorado, headed out to a Indian village just North of Bangalore. We asked God to teach us wisdom from what we were about to encounter.

I believe God put this in His Word – not to say it is sinful to ‘divide spoil’ – but to encourage those of us who are rich and prone to arrogance to intentionally take time to get a proper – and wise – perspective.

When we got to Bangalore – we stayed at a Guest House the first 4 nights. It is nice – but no cable TV, nothing but water to drink, hard beds, and extremely weak water pressure for showers. IMG_1712

However – after being 3 days in the village, let me tell you – the Guest House is . . . AMAZING!

In the village – we were surrounded by pastors who probably make much less than $1 a day. We stayed in an area with no internet, no TV, rock hard bunk beds, chickens who wanted the world to know they were awake at 3:30 am, nothing but rice and assorted meats/sauces 3 meals a day – with our hands as forks, and buckets of cold water that dubbed as a shower.

Perspective.

Before I left the Guest House I felt like it was nice, but just ‘so-so.’ I wished for Diet Cokes, ESPN, and powerful water pressure.

Having been in the village for a couple of nights, I honestly felt like the Guest House was sheer luxury. Seriously. I mean that. I didn’t care if I had ESPN or powerful water pressure. I am overjoyed that I have ANY water pressure that has warmth to it.

Before I left the Guest House, I was wishing for some good ole Southern cookin’. After eating rabbit meat, orange sauce and rice, I promise you – I am just fine (and thrilled!) with oatmeal and toast.

What’s more is that I have a feeling the people who stayed with us from the village were living in luxury compared to their normal, every day standards. And you know what? They were some of the happiest men I have ever been around in my life.

Perspective.

I am still wrestling with the takeaway(s) from this. But I can say for sure – from personal experience and because the Word of God doesn’t lie – that it is wise for us rich and proud types to spend some time with the humble and very poor types. They have MUCH to teach us. Or, should I say, the Lord has much to teach us through them. Did it make me grateful for what I have? Well, sure. But it does something more.

“Being of a lowly spirit with the poor” reminded me of a very, very, very important reality: God really is enough and He really is all that I need. There is a real danger with ‘stuff.’ The more you have – the less of God you think you need. Hence why it’s wise to do what this Proverb suggests.

When was the last time you deliberately got yourself some perspective?

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4 thoughts on “Perspective

  1. Rodney Wimberly says:

    Proper perspective is an attitude changer

  2. jayne says:

    Forever changed

  3. Richard McClendon says:

    When you left, did you think it was the Hilton in New York City?

  4. Libby says:

    Exactly how I felt in South Africa. We slept in rooms with little/no heat. Our food was not what we were used to, but there was plenty of it. And the people we were ministering to were so poor and lived in such bare accommodations, many of them without shoes, coats, or enough food. Many were dying from AIDS. And they were the happiest people I have ever had the honor to meet.

    Those 10 days were life changing! God is enough! God is good all the time!

    Looking forward to hearing about your trip and the work God has ahead for us!

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