A Matter Of Perspective

Blog 1715 – 06.02.2020

A Matter Of Perspective

Life happens to all of us pretty much the same. And, oh, some few indeed seem to garner the lion-share of the best life has to offer while many others always seem to get the stickier end of the stick. But, it is more than just a truism that love, life, and happiness are matters of perspective.

Seeing one’s self as a victim is a sure way to see every hand reached out as an attack and everyone an enemy. How awful it is to live that way or see loved ones choose that difficult and disappointing path. Is it really a matter of choice? I think it is or I must believe we have and never had any choice really at all.

The Psalmist David chose to fight the lion trying to steal his sheep, the giant that had bigger braver men quaking in their sandals, and to resist his own mad with jealousy beloved king. The greater part of his young life he spent on the run from this perceived enemy or that but even he could write, “My cup runs over, surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in God’s house forever.”

Some see the cup half empty, others have full, and the extreme views are someone stole my cup and my cup is over flowing. If you are not happy with the view, change it, that is less about your situation and location than it is your perspective. My phone dictionary defines perspective as:

It goes on to offer six more shades of the word’s meaning as a noun and one more as an adjective. New techniques can be learned and a even a skewed view, positive or negative perspective can be changed if we really want to change it. If you catch yourself no longer enjoying your “go to” perspective try another till you find the one that works best for you. What we believe to be true at any given moment is more parts point of view, perspective, than it is anything else. We see this world, the people, and the things in it through the often foggy lens of our own perception. The prolific writer Paul wrote that we see through a glass darkly now but that all will one day become clear. Since I believe that heaven is not some far destination but that it is within us and always within our reach, I think we have only to wipe our eyes to see better all the gifts that are truly ours, gifts that may not seem so at first. Paul again wrote, “What they intended for evil toward us, God intended for our good.”

Many perceive their lot in life as having been stollen from their homes, sold into slavery, whipped and shipped in chains to a strange and hateful land, where they were forced to labor to make others rich, seldom if ever given a chance at success and happiness. Their grievances are not without merit and every effort should be made to lessen the continuing privilege of the few and to make a more level playing field with true opportunity for those who historically have had and continue to have less. But, as much as systematic injustices must be changed perspective must be changed to. We must all of us stop seeing ourselves as “victims” and begin seeing ourselves and all our brothers and sisters more correctly as “victors.” Or as perhaps the greatest President this country has ever known put it above, so eloquently and precisely, instead of seeing and complaining about the thorns, we should stop and smell the roses. It is a matter of perspective.

Your friend and fellow traveler,

David White

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