"I only see God's work (Grace) in my rear view mirror". Have you ever found yourself looking back at a chapter of life, only to discover the grace you couldn't see while you were in the midst of it? Carri and Ebony sit down to weave through the concept of 'grace in review,' exploring how the passage of time can offer us a clearer, more enriched perspective on the events that shape our lives. As we close one year and step into another, this is a beautiful practice to be buoyed up by what Grace is doing in your life...each day.
Joining us from Nashville, Tennessee, Ebony gives a great analogy comparing life's journey to attending a concert, where the premium front-row seats might not always offer the best view. There are direct disadvantages in fact. There is a lot of power of stepping back—both literally and figuratively—to gain a vantage point that transforms our understanding of life's symphony. As we embark on this heart-to-heart, Carrie and Ebony invite you to revisit your own life's stages, encouraging a recognition of the grace that envelops us, often waiting patiently to be acknowledged from a higher view.
The rear view mirror is what creates our testimony.
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Welcome to Grace Among Us, the podcast where we unearth the many faces and places of grace and share stories of the power of grace in our human lives. Our desire is that this will inspire you to see grace in your own life and share it with others. Hello, hello, I'm Carrie Richard.Carri Richard:
I'm a mindset coach and I help people make space and enjoy ridethe rid ride. And we are here today to talk about grace and Ebony. Who are you?Ebony Gilbert:
I am Ebony Gilbert. I am talking today from Nashville, Tennessee. I'm excited to spend time with you all Awesome awesome.Carri Richard:
So as we're recording this. The year is ending and we're moving into a new year, and often becomes a time for reflection, looking back on the year, and so Ebony and I had a couple words before this and talked about Grace in Review, so the concept of looking back. I used to say I only see God in my rear view mirror. I don't find that to be totally true these days, however, it can be easier to see all the work and all the grace when I reflect versus as when I'm in the midst. So any thoughts, Ebony?Ebony Gilbert:
As you reflect, is there any time and space limitation in that reflection? Does it have to be a year out? Does it have to be a week out? It doesn't matter the distance between the event and the reflection point.Carri Richard:
That's a good question. You know, speaking in terms of grace, time and location are relevant. So no, and actually I've had experiences where I don't even see the grace in it till years later, because it's a difficult situation or I think it really there was no solution, and then years later, God seems to wrap it all up in a bow. How about for you?Ebony Gilbert:
I, you know I'm gonna go with me. Okay, Good.Carri Richard:
You know that's like my disclaimer, for I'm getting ready to go on a ride.Carri Richard:
I love it, let's go.Ebony Gilbert:
Do you go to concerts? Do you attend concerts? Have you been to a concert - whether it's a live band or a symphony, there's multiple instruments, there's multiple pieces. There's one conductor, but there's multiple. There's always one lead, but there's multiple. So the front rows of the concert, in whatever venue, they seem to be the best seats in the house, right?Carri Richard:
They're often the most expensive.Ebony Gilbert:
Of course they are, because you want to be the closest to the action, the closest to the show. Well, ticketmaster has discovered this phenomenon in the last five to 10 years, where they have started charging just as much, if not more, for the first row of the balcony seat and it's not even the entire balcony seat, it's from like maybe a fourth in on each side and it's the middle front row of the balcony costs just as much, if not more, than the first few rows closest to the stage. So when I think about this, I'm trying to paint a picture Big Symphony Hall, big stage, lots of instruments, one conductor, one lead, and I'm watching this play out. And when I'm in those first few rows I hear just fine, I think. I don't think I'm missing anything. I can see what's happening on the stage, I'm able to scan, I can hear. But as time passes, whatever that time may be a week, a month, an hour I take a step back to a different row. So the rows are the sequences of time, they're the seconds of time, and by the time I get a little bit higher and a little bit further back and I'm on that front row of the balcony now I realized that I was missing so much in those front rows near the stage. (Carri - Yeah). So I think I was seeing what I was supposed to be seeing when I was in that front row.. Now that time has passed and I backed up a little bit and I've gone a little bit higher, the acoustics are much better and the view is so much better and clearer because now I don't have to scan and pan around the room to see from corner to corner, I can look straight ahead and my window is wider and I can see it all so clearly. So it's not that I wasn't seeing on the front row in the process, it's not that I wasn't seeing on the front row in the present, because we're comparing these rows to time the front row is the present view was happening right now in my life. It's not that I wasn't able to see, I could see. But as I get a little older and time passes and I get a little higher in my faith, a little more elevated in my view, in my perspective, "and I understand why the value of those seats in the balcony are just as much if not more than those front rows. Because in that balcony comes a little bit of wisdom, you know, (Carri- yeah), and it's a little bit more difficult to get to. I got to go up some stairs to get there. I got to climb a little bit to get there, you know. So how do I see it in the rear view? I see it from the balcony.Carri Richard:
So why do you think you see it more clearly as time passes?Ebony Gilbert:
Let's go back to the concert. When I'm on that front row, all the different things that are going along can easily be confused, as noise, if I don't have a trained ear, right. Because there's so much happening and the noise can get in the way of how I'm interpreting this show. This beautiful symphony that's coming together can sound noisy and if the noise is distractions, I can't tell if it's really a trumpet or not. It's just loud, you know. So I think I see it better and hear it better when I get further away, because now have sound absorbers and the acoustics are working better. Things are absorbing the noisy part of it and I'm just hearing the music, you know. I can't tell that there's Trash on stage and it's dust. It doesn't matter, because I pulled out a little bit and you know, I think the challenge is, regardless of what my seat is in that house, how do I learn In the moment to translate the noise into music?Carri Richard:
Yeah, I love that analogy. So I'm sitting in the front row, and for me to see all the grace that's happening in the present is very difficult. It's difficult because if I'm in the front row, I can't I can't see the whole orchestra at the same time, so I'm being pulled from. Oh, oh, my gosh, I love oboe and I'm hearing the oboe and, and then the drums come and like I'm over here in the drums, like they're that. That analogy of back and forth, what, what is going on with me with respect to grace is my personality on one side, and grace, like my attachments and grace, how I want things to turn out, like me personalizing what's going on in any given thing and what God is doing in the process. I want it a certain way. You know, I want to hear the oboe, I'm going to turn my head and I'm going to lose the missing the drum. Exactly. I want to hear the drum like I'm in control. In the present, or I think I am, or I'm attached to an outcome, or I'm or I'm angry about how it's going, or something like that, whereas as time goes by we have a great forgetter right? That view broadens, the perspective broadens and then I can get out of my own personality, my own humanness, and Just see the work that was done in spite of me. I'd take it a step further.Ebony Gilbert:
OK, good, let's go, let's go. You got it ready to go. When you're in those front rows. You don't even know who else is in the room. (Carri -Yeah, that's a great point) you think this is your own personal concert. This is your experience. They're here for you.Carri Richard:
I was at a concert and I bought these seats. I was so excited and they were expensive, right, they were right, the stage was a stage. But then they had this outer stage that they were going to, that they were doing stuff on, and we were right in the middle of that, right in the middle, and I was like, yes, yes, so exciting. Like we are in, we're getting the sound sucked and all I was doing the whole time was this I'm turning around for those who aren't watching us. You know I was yeah, so anyway.Ebony Gilbert:
Yes, we're thinking about this From the perspective of community and we need each other and we thrive off each other. And I'm better when I know you're good and when you're you're celebrating the Oboe solo. I'm feeding off of that, and when I'm in the balcony and I'm backed away a little bit, I can see how this, this event, this show, is blessing people besides myself and it's bigger than me.Carri Richard:
And now I'm fueled and my cup is being filled because it's not about me that the word that is coming as you're painting that picture is humility.Ebony Gilbert:
Thank you for listening. Appreciate you coming to the show. You asked me one question and I went down a hole. Thank you for going on that ride with me. Carri appreciate it. Oh my gosh, yeah.Carri Richard:
Absolutely, absolutely. And that broader view - I get that broader view by taking time to reflect, to look back, because I can be full steam ahead all the time and when I do that, I tend to forget Who's in charge.Ebony Gilbert:
The rear view mirror is what creates our testimony.Carri Richard:
Absolutely, and the testimony is so powerful.Carri Richard:
It's so powerful and it also that testimony is so powerful and it reminds me of who God is in the present, of the grace that's here in the present. As you were talking about being in the balcony and time, having time, allowing time to pass, it also gives me grace that I can't see it all in the midst. It's okay, (Ebony - you're not supposed to) Yeah, yes, yeah.Ebony Gilbert:
You're not supposed to, and it encourages me because every personal experience that I think is personal. I'm on the front row of it. I know that eventually I'm going to pan out, I'm going to back away and I'm going to realize it needed to be personal for that point in time. Yeah, it needed to be, so I could grow and I could mature and I can get what the wisdom I needed out of it. But now that I'm a little bit satisfied there, I can back up and I can go higher and now I can take everything I learned on that front row and use it to bless others.Carri Richard:
That's the grace. Absolutely, absolutely. I love it. That's good stuff. So if you are in the midst of something and it's super uncomfortable and you don't see solution and you can't see grace, my encouragement is to just be okay with that and know that in time. I've been known to say, "I don't know what you're doing right now because I can't see it, but I know you're doing it and that's enough.Ebony Gilbert:
Yeah, that's enough.Carri Richard:
And when I don't believe that, then I call you Ebony and I say I don't know what's going on. I know something's happening, I'm not in control, and I just need to tell you that.Ebony Gilbert:
And I'll say that's okay.Carri Richard:
That's okay.Carri Richard:
Encourage each other.Ebony Gilbert:
Yes, yes, Life is a symphony. Yes, it is, and choose your seat wisely.Carri Richard:
And be willing to climb the stairs to the balcony.Ebony Gilbert:
Boom the view is better. Yeah, I love it. I love it. Merry Christmas, happy new year.Carri Richard:
Merry Christmas, happy new year, grace out.Ebony Gilbert:
Grace out.Speaker 1:
Thank you so much for joining us. If you enjoyed this episode, please let us know. We love to hear from you and share it with a friend. Also, please be sure to subscribe so you're notified when a new episode is posted. We hope you're leaving with another pointer to grace, a new perspective that will light it up in your own life. Until next time, be well, be bold, be kind to yourself and be on the lookout.