Being big picture people

Let’s continue thinking about perspective. 

When we’re experiencing hardship, it’s helpful to zoom out and try to look at the bigger picture. When we do that, we gain a clearer understanding about what is happening around us.

Here is why that can be helpful. In the midst of difficulty, our view can become limited. We can focus exclusively on the problems we are facing.

I tried to demonstrate this recently with some visuals during a worship service. Let’s say you look through your camera lens and see a wolf. That’s scary. But then you zoom out to see more of the picture. That allows you to see a fence between you and the wolf. That’s better. But then you zoom out farther still. That reveals a massive lion that has been trained to protect you from wolves. That’s a LOT better!

Psalm 46 helps us accomplish a similar thing in the spiritual realm. It reminds us about who God is and what God does. It’s easy to miss these insights unless we consciously focus on them and take them seriously.

–“God is our refuge and strength” (verse 1). He is our protecting refuge. He renews and restores our strength when we are weary. We’re not left to face the fire alone, nor are we given no tools for fortification.

–He is “an ever-present help in trouble” (verse 1). He’s not far away on a cloud and disinterested in our daily lives. He is active and engaged.

–He “he lifts his voice, the earth melts” (verse 6). He has a sovereign power by which he commands things to happen out of his goodness and love. He is the opposite of weak and apathetic. 

–“The LORD Almighty is with us” (verses 7 and 11). He is journeying alongside us as a warrior King. He comes to the aid of loyal citizens who are not only royal subjects but his beloved children.

Perhaps you are dealing with something difficult and need the reminder. 

Let’s not miss something important. If we are not consistently grounded in the Scriptures, we will lose this perspective. As David Helm has written: “The more you spend time looking at the big picture, the better your grasp of the big picture will be.”*

Let’s be big picture people even as we deal with the little daily details of life. 


–“Be still, and know that I am God.” Sermon. May 14, 2023. Click here.

–*David Helm, Expository Preaching: How We Speak God’s Word Today (Wheaton: Crossway, 2014), 70.

–Bible quotes are from the NIV.

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