In 1972 my father began pastoring a church in Woodlawn, Tennessee. I was 3 years old at the time. We had a nice home behind the church where I lived with my parents and two brothers. Those years of my life are filled with fond memories of people who loved us and invested in us. There were also some funny memories that fill my mind.
• I remember my best friend, Jimmy, bringing his grandfathers cattle prod to church to shock the girls. He was quickly told that cattle prods are not made to shock the girls. I think today that would be a “criminal offense”.
• I started kindergarten there and got in trouble for kissing a girl under the table. The funny thing about it now is that I don’t even remember her name.
• Then there was the day I tried starting my fathers stick shift car without pushing in the clutch. I hit the church with the car. My father was not happy.
There are many other memories. We had been there 3 years and I loved it. Everything was great till my father received “the call”. It was a call to go to another church. Not just any church but a church in Stillwater, Oklahoma. I don’t recall being bothered about moving away in general. I was bothered about going to Oklahoma. I thought, “We are going where?”
Why was I bothered about moving there? Every TV show I had ever seen about Oklahoma involved horses, wagons, cowboys and Indians. I was sure that we would have to sell our station wagon and buy horses and a wagon. I was sure that when we got there we would certainly have to fight the Indians and battle the challenges of life on the frontier.
All these years later this has become a humorous family story that we reminisce about. I know today this was not true. It is funny to me now I thought that it was true.
Anais Nin said, “We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” We often think that what we see is reality. My parents had a hard time convincing me that what I perceived as “reality” was not true. We interpret much, if not all, of our lives through our own lens. We avoid things that we think are not possible regardless of whether they are or not.
It was Jesus who said, “You have heard that it was said…but I say to you.” This phrase begins in Matthew 5:21-22 and occurs 4 more times in the same chapter. Jesus wanted them to see things in a new way, with new eyes. Things were not like they thought. He offered a new way to live.
Jesus wants us to know there is more to this life than what we see and know. There are mountains we have not climbed and a life we have yet to experience. God wants to take us “from where we are” to “where He wants us to be.”
Begin to see things with God’s eyes. Explore what can be. With His eyes “all things are possible.”