It is strange what the Father will use to remind us of those lessons that he most wants us to learn. I have recently seen a quote floating around the internet on various sites like Facebook, Twitter, and the ever-popular Pinterest. Usually, the quote, written in some jagged script, is accompanied by the twisted visage of the newest rendition of Lewis Carroll’s Cheshire cat. The quote, shortened in its present form from the original, simply states “I’m not crazy, my reality is just different from yours.” Every believer should, at some point in their walk, feel the need to respond to their critics and naysayers with a thought very near this one; for make no mistake, the reality in which we live is very different from the one with which we are presented daily, and as we come to operate more fully in that reality, those who live in this other reality will, if you will pardon the gratuitous Wonderland reference, find us “curiouser and curiouser.”
Paul’s second epistle to the church at Corinth rightly explains the curious phenomenon. After an attempt at explaining to the Corinthians the treasure that had come to them through Messiah which would allow them to suffer and still remain faithful, Paul notes in chapter 4, verse 18, “we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” Paul seems to point to the fact that there is a world, an eternal world, that serves as an invisible backdrop to the world in which we find ourselves, a world where what is seen and our reality are two very different things. In order for Christians to live the life designed for us by God, we must come to understand that, no matter what the world says, our lives are governed by another, stronger, more significant set of rules and that these are the rules we must follow.
To begin with, we must acknowledge the fact that there is a war going on behind the scenes. It is a war that began long before we ever came to be, yet it is also a war of which we have become the focal point. YHWH, through His Messiah, stands with his arms outstretched, welcoming us into a permanent, everlasting relationship with him, while the adversary, using every tempting trick at his disposal, attempts to lure us away from that fellowship. We see the war played out in the stories of Daniel, where God’s messenger must pause to contend with one of the fallen, in Michael’s battle with satan over the body of Moses, and perhaps most graphically in the story of Job. Here, as author John Eldridge so aptly notes, “God… [places] the perception of his own integrity as well as the reputation of his whole kingdom on the genuineness of Job’s heart, and provides us not only a glimpse into this unseen world, but a role to play in it.” (See Job 1:6-12; 2:1-10)
Following this recognition, all one has to do is look carefully at some of the instructions in God’s Word to understand that we, as whole-hearted believers, are using a different playbook. The world demands that you do what you have to do to get ahead; God reminds us that “the first shall be last and the last shall be first.” The world says, “Get even”; God simply says, “Forgive.” The world operates on a principle of getting and taking, God pushes us to give rather than to receive, and the list goes on.
So when you see us give until it hurts, we’re not crazy; our reality is just different than yours. When the doctors hand out a death sentence and we begin to pray, fully expecting that prayer to be answered, we’re not crazy; our reality is just different than yours. When we sing right through the storms in our lives: through the flat tires and flatter wallets, through the broken bones and broken homes, don’t presume to judge. We’re not crazy. Our reality is just different than yours.
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