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January 2, 2013 by bradcharlesbeals

When I first started hunting, I saw deer everywhere. My vision–at the corners of my eyes, especially–was full of motion from deer running, deer jumping, deer fleeing my fearsomeness. Eventually I realized there weren’t any deer in the woods around me. In fact, there was nothing moving at all, nothing except me. My eyes were deceiving me.

When you walk through woods, your perspective is continually changing so that every angle, shadow, patch of dark and light, is in constant motion and in constant change with relationship to the things around it. A snowy gap between two trees closes, and from the corner of your eye it looks like movement. The angle of one branch shifts along another as you walk, and it looks like movement. But it’s not. It’s just shifting perspective.

It’s important when hunting that way that you not spend the whole day moving; in fact, most of it should be spent stationary. You only move to get to a new stationary perspective. And there, all the false movement of shadow and light stops. What’s left is the real motion of bird and squirrel and falling leaf. And hopefully deer.

But to move constantly without stopping to fix your perspective is confusion. And foolishness.

Life’s the same. We move constantly, and so the fixed things around us have the illusion of movement; the things that are really moving get exaggerated. In the woods I can stop, lean up against a tree, and look around me. But what do I do in life? How do I stop the whirl of time, the spinning of earth and stars? How do I see clearly when my vision is filled with the shadows of fear and chaos and calamity? In life, is there a place to simply stand and fix my perspective?

There is. In this life, the things around me appear as they truly are only when my feet are fixed upon the rock of God’s word. It’s the only constant thing in a world of changing perspective. It’s solid ground when light and dark, shadow and substance threaten to confound me. In the woods, in this life, my eyes deceive me, so I have to stop often and just stand there. It’s then that I see things as they really are.

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.”
~ Psalm 42:2,3


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