This is not a great quality, high-resolution picture. But sometimes a cell-phone camera is all I have at hand. Besides, it’s the story more than the picture that holds this post together for me.
It’s about perspective, because the only way I could have seen or even imagined this particular view of the world was by hitting my golf ball way off-line and ending up in a patch of pretty weeds.
I was out yesterday morning, hitting the little white ball around with my friend Gerard. It’s amazing what you can see when you spray the ball left and right of the fairway – and sometimes both during the same hole!
So I looked down at the splash of yellow, hit my ball (on to the green, curiously enough), and was about to walk off when it occurred to me that the view would be much different from ground level. I’m not sure how much golf you play or watch, but I’m guessing you can count on one hand the number of times you’ve seen a golfer prone on the dirt with a cellphone camera, trying to get another angle at the weeds!
But I enjoy looking at things differently. That’s the point. Because neither the flowers nor the photography are sufficiently arresting in and of themselves. But the idea of thinking differently most certainly is.
There’s a passage from Numbers 14, verse 24, where God points out a particular individual who has won God’s attention and respect because he owns a spirit of “different thinking” in the way he lives. “This is my servant Caleb,” God said, “he thinks differently….” Another translation parses the thought this way, “There hath been another spirit with him (Caleb), and he is fully after Me.”
Gerard and I were talking about how disappointingly evident it is that so few people actually live and interact with the world in ways that could be described in a Numbers 14:24 fashion: “This is obviously my servant, So-and-so; he/she thinks differently.” or “has another spirit with him/her…”
Here’s what I think. I think the life-charged life necessarily impacts every detail of what I’m up to. I think that following Jesus was a huge causal factor in the way I lined up my view of the pretty weeds. I believe that I still had a great time yesterday despite the fact that I three-putted eleven greens, exactly because I am learning to “have a different spirit.”
There’s a promise – cause/effect – attached to the end of Numbers 14:24. The promise talks about bringing Caleb into the Promised Land. I often write and talk about the Kingdom of God as being akin to a restoration of “Garden Principles.” Garden principles means being in communion with God once again. This is not pie-in-the-sky-when-we-die theology. This is about now. The promise of The Promised Land is now.
“But my servant Caleb has a different spirit. He follows me with his whole heart. So I will bring him into the land he went to.”
Amen to that – DEREK