I was standing at a mountain top looking down at the world. From my point of view it all looked so small, like a toy-world. Inside the houses people may have been arguing or making pancakes. Perhaps they were cleaning the fridge or reading a book. It was impossible to tell. And, quite frankly, from where I was standing, it didn’t matter at all. All I could sense was the calm of a world at peace. From my point of view the people in the houses became freakishly insignificant.
I was taking a peak at my own heart and it was going loopy with thoughts, worries, dreams, nightmares, poems, questions and ideas that I hope nobody else would ever see. There were deadlines I couldn’t possibly meet, bills I didn’t know how to pay, friends I didn’t know what to do with, laundry I didn’t want to deal with, books I wouldn’t ever write and emotions I didn’t know how to control.
I wondered how it was possible to be so noisy on the inside when what I was surrounded by was peace. It was a little bit like my shell was hard as desert tortoises’ shell, when it needed to be porous like sandstone.
You may think I am writing this in an attempt to be deep and poetic. That is actually not the case, because I have realized over the years that I am neither. I am writing it because I am trying to learn that in the big, big picture, my problems are really quite small. In the big, big picture, my problems don’t even show. The fruit flies in my kitchen that are driving my nutso-bananas? In the perspective I saw on the mountain they don’t matter at all. The lack of perfection in my life? It is a nothing issue. The person who hurt me with remarks that actually stung? Can’t be seen from up on the mountain. The very important paper I need to write, but haven’t started yet? From the mountain top it is of no significance whatsoever.
It is liberating to be in a place where the perspective is different. It is really rather calming to understand that from a distance, big things become very small.
I think for that reason, we all need to climb some more mountains. We will then see that the things we thought were as important as air, and as big as giants, become small specks that hardly can be seen.
On the other hand…
Our small issues do matter, and they should be given some space. The broken heart? It may seem insignificant from a distance, but close-up, it hurts like a thousand bee-stings. The feeling of failure? It may only be a big deal for you, but it still makes you feel like shit. The worries about the future? It is a worry that can take on the personality of a hungry tiger, and eat you up right there.
See, our big and small problems and worries may be as small as flies poop in the big picture, but when you are the one experiencing it, they feel as big as Mt. Everest.
I think it is weird and confusing, and in the end, I feel like the one who can help me make sense of it, is the One who I believe created me. He cares about my big and small problems. At the same time, He wants me to remember that He is above it all and from his point of view, in the view of eternity, I can just take a chill pill.
His friend, and follower, the Psalmist says it better than I can:
When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them