Perspectives

Perspective is a very interesting thing. We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are.
~Benny Perez

Measure not God’s love and favour by your own feeling. The sun shines as clearly in the darkest day as it does in the brightest. The difference is not in the sun, but in some clouds which hinder the manifestation of the light thereof.

~Richard Sibbes



Hope lives under the cloud of impending good. It’s up to you to choose your perspective. How you look at tomorrow directly impacts the way you live today.

~Katherine Walden

It is so easy for me to “get stuck” in seeing circumstances from my viewpoint. However, my view is so limited. All the while the Holy Spirit is high above all the circumstances capturing the entire, enormous beautiful picture. He sees the vast expanse of all of the good and the bad and how it fits together to make a magnificent masterpiece in the end. The storms don’t discourage, rattle, and upset him the way they often affect me. Yet He understands my humanity and is with me always to comfort, guide, counsel, and encourage. The following devotion is from Discover the God of More, Benny Perez on the topic of Holy Spirit Perspective. I pray it is an encouragement to you, also.

Your friend,

Tiffany


Holy Spirit Perspective

When we are facing battles, navigating the storms, and walking through the valleys, we must seek the Holy Spirit’s perspective. Getting a revelation of His perspective of our circumstances has the power to change what’s happening on the inside of us, which changes what’s happening on the outside of us. 

Perspective is a very interesting thing. We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are. Depending on how you are, you may not see something the way it really is. How you process what’s happening in your life depends on where you are at in your life. 

You need to know that regardless of your upbringing, by God’s Word and grace, you can begin to look at life the way the God of More wants you to look at life. That ancient Greek word used for ‘transform’ in the original text is metamorphosis—the same word that is used to describe the process of a caterpillar turning into a butterfly. Our perspective needs to transform from a natural view to a supernatural view. 

If we want to see things from a Holy Spirit perspective, then we need to be spending time reading and studying the Word of God. If God has spoken a dream into your heart, the Holy Spirit will remind you of it when you are in the middle of a storm. If you are frustrated and discouraged because you cannot see the fulfillment of a dream yet, the Holy Spirit will give you the strength and wisdom to endure. 

We must view our storms and valleys from the perspective that God is above them. And if God is above it, and you are in Christ, and the Holy Spirit dwells within you, then you will surely arise from it and get to the other side. 

The Holy Spirit is above all things, so we need to get the same perspective the Holy Spirit has over the situation, rather than the perspective that I have over the situation. No matter what voids are there, what darkness is there, what the enemy is trying to do in your life— the Holy Spirit is hovering above your situation. The God of More is about ready to turn it around on your behalf!

The Hope Plant

“It’s always something, to know you’ve done the most you could. But, don’t leave off hoping, or it’s of no use doing anything. Hope, hope to the last!”

~Charles Dickens

“Hope means hoping when things are hopeless, or it is no virtue at all… As long as matters are really hopeful, hope is mere flattery or platitude; it is only when everything is hopeless that hope begins to be a strength.” 

~Gilbert Keith G. K. Chesterton

More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

~Romans 5:3-5

The Hope Plant is the title of my first book. Somehow I totally forget that I ever wrote it. I seriously forgot! Quite honestly, it’s probably because it’s about one of the hardest times in my life. I guess in some ways I’d rather forget. I’m glad I remembered today though.

So, to sum it up briefly, the way this book came about was through some pretty horrific health problems I faced during and after the birth of my third child. I intended to write a full length book about it, but life happened, Landon was diagnosed with autism, and the chaotic life has not stopped yet. (Yes this is an excuse about why I didn’t write the long version of the book, but it is definitely true.)

However, I have an uncle who really, really wanted me to write a book. So, as a 60th birthday present for him, I wrote a much shorter version of The Hope Plant using a site called StoryJumper. My daughter used StoryJumper for several years to write her stories and encouraged me to use it too.

I didn’t use any kind of formal structure or method to write this book, I just kinda wrote it. 😊 It is written like a children’s book in that the plant is personified, and it glosses over the health problems for the most part. The overall theme of hope and the simplicity of the plant is somewhat childlike. It does mention miscarriage/death in part of the story, so that part is more adult themed. (So I obviously did not have a clear picture of who the audience would be other than my uncle at the time I wrote this version.)

All of that to say, I think at times God wants us to look back and remember how far we’ve come. I felt like the Holy Spirit nudged me today reminding me of the book and said ”Look, remember this hard time, you got through this, and you’ll make it through the difficulties you are facing now. Trust me.” What better way to remember than reading a written reminder of how God used a plant to help me have hope.

I’m not sure if this link to my book will work. I am very technologically challenged at times. 😊 The link can be copied and pasted if it doesn’t work or if you’d like to look up The Hope Plant (Tiffany Vaughn Guy) at storyjumper.com. (A funny, little caveat…some of the books listed under my name on the site are books my daughter wrote several years ago. She has always been so creative and quite the little author. 😊)

https://www.storyjumper.com/book/read/87364535/The-Hope-Plant

Today I pray you have hope and never lose it, no matter how dark circumstances may be in your life. We are not promised an easy, problem-free life, and often we find ourselves in difficulties that seem to almost drown us. When the storm clears and the difficulty subsides, we can look back and see (sometimes even read) of how God helped us endure. Through it all, the most comforting, reassurance of all is that Jesus never lets go of us. We can always trust in that. He is our Hope.

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
~Romans 15:4

Your friend,

Tiffany

An Encouraging Thought

I originally posted the following blog a little over two years ago. Lately, I’ve been thinking a good bit about purpose…probably because of the new year, discussions about resolutions, etc. There have been times when I struggled with purpose and understanding the “whys“ of life. The thought came to mind more than once lately of how much I’m encouraged and even inspired by those who share their stories, struggles, and how they’ve made it through hard circumstances with God’s help. I’ve been blown away at times by others sharing how something I’ve shared has encouraged them! It’s totally God’s hand at work-nothing I’ve accomplished alone.

Today I want to encourage you, yes you, to continue to share your story- in writing or otherwise. While you are doing so, look for the little ways God reveals He is at work in your life. You may be shocked at just how real and ever present He is. Don’t worry if you are in a season like Frodo where he ”wished the Ring had never come to him.” We don’t always get to choose the situations that come to us in this life, but God promises to use the hardest of circumstances for His glory, if we will allow Him to! I hope you enjoy the following and pray you experience God’s presence continually no matter the circumstance. Blessings!

Frodo: I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.

Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times; but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. There are other forces at work in this world, Frodo, besides the will of evil. Bilbo was meant to find the Ring. In which case, you were also meant to have it. And that is an encouraging thought.

J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, #1)

My husband and two older kids were watching Lord of the Rings recently, and this quote caught my attention, again. I remember it making an impression on me the first time I watched The Fellowship of the Ring, and this time I stopped again when I heard it and reflected on the meaning. We don’t get to choose what circumstances life throws at us at times. It reminds me of a cross stitched quote my mother had hanging in her bedroom years ago. “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” If you’re like me, just thinking of that makes you nervous! How will we know what to accept and what to change? The answer is in trust.

We often don’t get to decide what cards we are dealt in life. Sometimes the game of life seems to deal us good cards, and sometimes it feels like we get only the bad. We want to fix everything, to make everything right, but that is not always possible. Some things cannot be changed no matter what we do. If we’ve prayed about it, and are following God’s leading, really all we can do is trust God and keep moving forward.  We don’t have to worry about deciding what will and won’t happen in our lives, we can leave it up to God! Let Him decide that, let Him allow the things He wants to happen in your life. All we have to do is use the time, talents, and treasures He has given us. Is it easy? No! Do we always understand? No! Did God allow the circumstances that are happening in your life right now? Yes! All things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28).

Time. Sometimes it feels like it’s dragging and flying at the same time. It’s what our lives are made of. We only have a limited amount- say 100 years if we’re lucky. Not to sound all gloom and doom, but life goes by faster than we think and we really don’t know how much time we have here.

All we have to do is decide what to do with the time that is given to us”.

That makes me not want to waste time doing unimportant things. It makes me want to be kinder, to love and give more. To not worry as much. To make sure I’m fulfilling God’s purpose in my life.

I love the way Sam, Frodo’s friend, stays with Frodo throughout his journey with the ring. Whether Frodo fully realizes Sam’s devotion or not, it is obvious to the viewer that Sam is a true and loyal friend. I think Sam is a reminder that God sends encouragement when we need it and He makes sure we know we aren’t ever alone.

The situation we find ourselves in that we have no control over was meant to happen. Remembering that brings us peace. It will all make sense eventually, if not in this life, in the one to come!

There is hope and joy in simply knowing you are living out your purpose. It was hard for Frodo to see the hope and joy in his situation when he was carrying the heavy burden of the ring. We all have a burden of some sort. Think about what burden you “wish had never come to you”.

All the human emotions you feel are normal. But remember, there are other forces at work besides the bad ones, there is good at work, too! God is in control of our lives if we’ve put our trust in Him. Our “burden” didn’t catch Him off guard or take him by surprise. He’s working when we can’t even see it and “that is an encouraging thought”.  

Proverbs 12:25

Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, But a good word makes it glad.

Matthew 11:28-30

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” 

Your friend,

Tiffany

An Encouraging Thought

I originally posted the following blog a little over two years ago. Lately, I’ve been thinking a good bit about purpose…probably because of the new year, discussions about resolutions, etc. There have been times when I struggled with purpose and understanding the “whys“ of life. The thought came to mind more than once lately of how much I’m encouraged and even inspired by those who share their stories, struggles, and how they’ve made it through hard circumstances with God’s help. I’ve been blown away at times by others sharing how something I’ve shared has encouraged them! It’s totally God’s hand at work-nothing I’ve accomplished alone.

Today I want to encourage you, yes you, to continue to share your story- in writing or otherwise. While you are doing so, look for the little ways God reveals He is at work in your life. You may be shocked at just how real and ever present He is. Don’t worry if you are in a season like Frodo where he ”wished the Ring had never come to him.” We don’t always get to choose the situations that come to us in this life, but God promises to use the hardest of circumstances for His glory, if we will allow Him to! I hope you enjoy the following and pray you experience God’s presence continually no matter the circumstance. Blessings!

Frodo: I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.

Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times; but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. There are other forces at work in this world, Frodo, besides the will of evil. Bilbo was meant to find the Ring. In which case, you were also meant to have it. And that is an encouraging thought.

J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, #1)

My husband and two older kids were watching Lord of the Rings recently, and this quote caught my attention, again. I remember it making an impression on me the first time I watched The Fellowship of the Ring, and this time I stopped again when I heard it and reflected on the meaning. We don’t get to choose what circumstances life throws at us at times. It reminds me of a cross stitched quote my mother had hanging in her bedroom years ago. “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” If you’re like me, just thinking of that makes you nervous! How will we know what to accept and what to change? The answer is in trust.

We often don’t get to decide what cards we are dealt in life. Sometimes the game of life seems to deal us good cards, and sometimes it feels like we get only the bad. We want to fix everything, to make everything right, but that is not always possible. Some things cannot be changed no matter what we do. If we’ve prayed about it, and are following God’s leading, really all we can do is trust God and keep moving forward.  We don’t have to worry about deciding what will and won’t happen in our lives, we can leave it up to God! Let Him decide that, let Him allow the things He wants to happen in your life. All we have to do is use the time, talents, and treasures He has given us. Is it easy? No! Do we always understand? No! Did God allow the circumstances that are happening in your life right now? Yes! All things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28).

Time. Sometimes it feels like it’s dragging and flying at the same time. It’s what our lives are made of. We only have a limited amount- say 100 years if we’re lucky. Not to sound all gloom and doom, but life goes by faster than we think and we really don’t know how much time we have here.

All we have to do is decide what to do with the time that is given to us”.

That makes me not want to waste time doing unimportant things. It makes me want to be kinder, to love and give more. To not worry as much. To make sure I’m fulfilling God’s purpose in my life.

I love the way Sam, Frodo’s friend, stays with Frodo throughout his journey with the ring. Whether Frodo fully realizes Sam’s devotion or not, it is obvious to the viewer that Sam is a true and loyal friend. I think Sam is a reminder that God sends encouragement when we need it and He makes sure we know we aren’t ever alone.

The situation we find ourselves in that we have no control over was meant to happen. Remembering that brings us peace. It will all make sense eventually, if not in this life, in the one to come!

There is hope and joy in simply knowing you are living out your purpose. It was hard for Frodo to see the hope and joy in his situation when he was carrying the heavy burden of the ring. We all have a burden of some sort. Think about what burden you “wish had never come to you”.

All the human emotions you feel are normal. But remember, there are other forces at work besides the bad ones, there is good at work, too! God is in control of our lives if we’ve put our trust in Him. Our “burden” didn’t catch Him off guard or take him by surprise. He’s working when we can’t even see it and “that is an encouraging thought”.  

Proverbs 12:25

Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, But a good word makes it glad.

Matthew 11:28-30

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” 

Your friend,

Tiffany