Post Traumatic Stress


Author: David Causey, USA (Ret.)

Reflections in the Fuel. Photo by The U.S. Marines is licensed under CC By 2.0

The Kaleidoscope is a simple but marvelous device. Invented by Sir David Brewster in 1816, the kaleidoscope consists of a tube into which three rectangular mirrors are inserted forming a long triangular chamber. Upon these mirrors are reflected the images of bits of plastic, glass, and beads that tumble in a nearly flat “object chamber” at one end of the kaleidoscope. This end of the kaleidoscope also has a round, glass window for letting light into the mirrored chamber. The other end of the tube has an eyepiece for viewing the images reflected on the mirrors.


Furthermore, as the tube is rolled in the hand of the viewer, the bits of colored plastic or glass tumble in the object chamber and they are reflected upon the mirrors. The mirrors reflect and multiply these images over and over against each other.

Now if you look at the “window end” of the kaleidoscope the tumbling bits of colored glass or plastic look like nothing. They look like stuff fit for the garbage can. But if you look through the eyepiece you’ll see unimaginable beauty and symmetry.

Quite often the events of our lives seem like nothing but bits of broken glass and useless chips of plastic. They look unredeemable, like stuff fit for the trash. But, just as the kaleidoscope transforms the useless and meaningless bits of junk into something beautiful, so God takes those painful images of our lives and gives them beauty, symmetry, and meaning.

Heaven’s view will be like looking at our lives through the eyepiece of the kaleidoscope. Christ will reveal to us the beauty, symmetry, and purpose that God’s wisdom, power, and love have made from all the pain and affliction in our lives. The Scripture tells us, “We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!” (1 Corinthians 13:12, The Message)


Dear Father in heaven, in my limited worm’s-eye-view of the world, help me to trust in Your infinite wisdom, power, and love. Help me to have faith, O God, that You have a good and wonderful purpose for all the events of my life, whether they are pleasurable or painful. Help me to rest in hope that You’ll reveal it to me in Your good time. Amen.

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