As I was going through a particularly difficult stretch of life I had the realization that my faith was measured by my peace. The less peace I had, the less faith I really had.
Why was my faith so weak? I concluded that my faith was weak because my focus was off of God and His promises, and instead on people and circumstances in my life. Any level of fear meant I had my eyes on the things of the temporal world and off of eternity.
My fear could only be a fear for my life in this world - my physical life, or my quality of life (my reputation, my comfort, my self-image, my family relations, etc.).
My God has promised me that I will be with Him in eternity. If I truly believe that, why would I want this physical life to drag on even one more day. I should be exhilarated to cross out of a temporal life to the eternal. This has nothing to do with suicide (truly a sin as we take God's place in that decision), but with a yearning for, not a fear to go to my Father's house.
If I had an eternity perspective, versus a temporal perspective, I should live with true peace, free from anxiety. I would live with a boldness and courage that would attract others.
Sadly, I was not living that way (and truthfully still do not on the level I should).
My conclusion was that I can always gauge when my perspective had shifted from eternal to temporal based on how much peace I had in my life.
Now when I lose peace (as evidenced by anger and fear and strife) I gather myself and say (usually out load), "this is not from my father, I will not receive it". Then I pray, "Father please help me to keep my eyes on You, and off of people and circumstances".
A secondary point that I pondered and wanted to explore in the book was the idea that God uses the foolish and lesser things of this world, to confound the wise and powerful. Through the Bible you see God using shepherds who were the lowest esteemed workers in their society to be used for the greatest tasks (Moses, Joseph, David).
The characters in this book are all "everyday people" who just obediently do things put in front of them and allow God to change the world using their multiplied obedience.
Paul wrote in I Corinthians 13:13 that "these three things remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love." I read that to mean that the things that we do in time that are soaked in faith, hope and love will endure in eternity. That is the code to the cover art. Within eternity what remains is faith (in the finished work of the cross), hope (our anchor in our storms), and love (the heart).
Finally, I like to use the image of a peaceful pond representing eternity. Many people feel too small, and that their ability to impact their church or community (much less the world) is not real to them.
Dwight Moody changed the world of his time for Yeshua but it was a very timid Sunday School teacher named Mr. Kimball who fought off real anxiety to get the courage to talk to Moody about salvation.
Like that pond, even a small stone thrown in will create a circle of waves that will radiate out. A stone, tossed by a toddler will impact the pond with radiating waves that change the pond's surface. Seven toddlers tossing seven stones will create dozens of interacting reactions.
Mr. Kimball's pebble tossed in the pond to witness to one boy in his Sunday school class created a tidal wave that still resounds today, but who lead Mr. Kimball to salvation, and who lead the one before and so on. Millions of unknown acts of obedience needed to happen for a Dwight Moody to appear.
A million people sending acts of love, obedience and faith into this world will create billions of interactions that will change the eternity of millions of people. I believe that will be the story of the end times - there will first be an amazing end time revival where waves of love cover the planet.
There are five story lines that intertwine to tell The Eternity Perspective story.