“There are times in life when the fog rolls in and we lost sight of the shore. . . . When the fog is thick, it’s easy to lose perspective. We think things are worse than they are. Without realizing it, we start to feel sorry for ourselves. We quit and then we blame the fog so we won’t feel like a quitter.”- Kyle Idleman
In Chapter 3 (“Keep Perspective”) of Don’t Give Up, Kyle Idleman begins with the story of Florence Chadwick. Ms. Chadwick gained fame as the first woman to swim the English Channel both ways. Furthermore, she attempted a swim from Catalina Island to the California coastline.
However, her first attempt failed. While Florence certainly felt exhausted from her sixteen-hour swim, she halted her effort because fog rolled in and obscured the coastline. As she climbed in the support boat, she found out that she stopped less than a mile from shore. When the same situation occurred toward the end of her second attempt two months later, Florence focused on her mental image of the shoreline. Her perspective intact, she refused to give up. She reached the coastline.
Yet, in the midst of difficult situations and painful circumstances, Kyle observes, we often lose faith. Because we lose our perspective. Since our focus centers on our immediate hurt, that hurt seems quite immense at the time. But, as Florence Chadwick experienced, a little perspective can change everything.
In conclusion, Kyle underscores, while sympathy and empathy provide comfort and assurance, some of us need a more challenging message. Hence, the author believes our cloud of witnesses employs a tough love tool when the situation dictates. Pastor Idleman adds:
“Trials are trying, but they don’t last forever. Don’t spend your life feeling sorry for yourself. As long as you decide to see yourself as a victim, you won’t experience the taste of victory.”
Today’s question: What Scriptures steady your perspective when thick fog rolls in? Please share.
Coming Monday: the Short Meditation for Mother’s Day, “Life challenges and obstacles”
Tomorrow’s blog: “Reinforcing a victim mentality”