When my oldest daughter, Hannah, was in first grade, her elementary school music class produced the soon to be Broadway hit, It’s a Barnyard Moosical. With a title like that, you expect nothing short of The Music Man or State Fair caliber production.
Like any great musical, there would be auditions. In the weeks leading up to the auditions our daughter was beside herself with excitement. She wanted what any normal aspiring actress would want at age 7…to be a chicken. Fairies, Princesses…and Fairy Princesses were so “last year”…now only one thing would do…to be the silly, strutting, clucking, giggling…chicken.
Sadly, Murphy’s Law reared his ugly head, and our daughter found herself sick on the day of the auditions and missed the assigning of the parts. There would be no tryout for her…there would only be resting the role of the chicken stardom, into the hands of destiny.
Later that evening…Hannah was feeling well enough to attend our Wednesday night ministry night (AWANA). Even as we drove to the church…she couldn’t wait to find her fellow classmates to ask if she was indeed one of the celebrated chickens.
However, it was not to be. Rather than having all of her first grade dreams come true…she was told that she would not be a chicken…instead, she would be a cow. There is a slight pause…and Hannah responds, “That’s ok…the cows dance…I like to dance…”
For the rest of the night…Hannah could not stop talking about how excited she was to dance and be a cow. Even the next morning…she was excited for music class…where she would learn all that the cows would say and do.
After school…she got into the van…and we asked…“So tell us about music…what dance do the cows do?”
Hannah replied…“I’m not a cow…I’m a pig…”
“How do you feel about that?”
“It’s ok…pink is my favorite color.”
What I wouldn’t give to have that kind of perspective when encountering “hardship” after “hardship.” It’s humbling to recall how a first grader can handle the ups and downs of her complex first grade life...when many times I can’t get outside of myself and gain any true perspective.
In John 11:1-16, Jesus is thrown into the midst of a situation that causes everyone around to him loose perspective. We would find ourselves in the same boat, I’m sure. But, Jesus displayed a different perspective. His good friend Lazarus had died…and where everyone around him saw danger and tragedy…Jesus saw an opportunity for the Glory of God to be revealed.
It makes me wonder, “What am I missing? What do I need to see…that I am not seeing? How does my perspective need to change?”
What about you? What do you need to see that perhaps you are not seeing?