When I realized it was my turn to write the Perspectives article for the Powell Tribune, as the United Methodist Pastor appointed to serve the communities of Lovell and Powell; I thought to myself, …
When I realized it was my turn to write the Perspectives article for the Powell Tribune, as the United Methodist Pastor appointed to serve the communities of Lovell and Powell; I thought to myself, what does the word perspective mean? On a very broad level the word perspective means the way we see things, but at its root the word means to look through or to see clearly. Kind of appropriate as we break into 2021 since our vision this past year (ironically the year being 2020 which is the designation for good eyesight); yet the year we bid farewell to has certainly been clouded by many things, hasn’t it? So, how do we begin this new year with a fresh perspective? How can we go about 2021 seeing things clearly?
I decided to turn to the scriptures and was surprised when I found this passage taken from the Message version of the Bible found in 1 Corinthians Chapter 13. You may know that chapter affectionately as the love chapter. But this portion is just after the descriptive passage of what love is and more importantly what love is not. These were the words that spoke to my heart: “We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears, and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us! But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.” (Eugene Peterson, The Message) It is important to note that the Message version is a personal paraphrase of Biblical literature that gives a distinctly modern twist to scripture.
But regardless of the Bible version or preferred translation you may choose to read scripture from, the message given to us all is quite clear. We must love one another. We must love each other through the dark, clouded, uncertain times like 2020 and we are also asked to love each other until we can see clearly. “We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us.” That should help us put both 2020 and 2021 into a fresh perspective. Now more than ever before, it is the time for us to abide in faith, hope and charity (if you use the King James version) or in the words of Peterson, it is time that we “trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly” and “love extravagantly.”
Clear your perspective as together we make 2021 the year that we choose to “love!”
(Janita Krayniak is the pastor for First United Methodist Church, 137 W. Second St.)