Lately I have been thinking a lot about perspectives. Much of the literature and film I have consumed in the past while has helped me ponder and think about perspectives and how it can help us feel more unified and understanding of each other. Those of us reading this blog have a lot of blessings and resources that many in this world do not have. We can read and write and we have access to the internet, to name a few. Many of us have received at least some form of education and may be pursuing more. To me it is pretty scary that there are so many who do not have these blessings and opportunities. And so this has got me thinking about perspectives.
We live our lives through our own perspective and this shapes how we see the world. But what if we could see the world from someone else’s eyes, the proverbial walking a mile in someone else’s shoes? What if we were born with a severe mental illness, or no money or no education? While I firmly believe in the principal of moral agency and how we have the power to choose between good and evil, what if the choices we had were extremely limited. Even Adam and Eve had a choice between good and evil (See 2 Nephi 2:25). What is you were born with no hope of education or of ever knowing the opportunities available to God’s children? What if you were born in a remote village and became recruited as a child soldier or a terrorist? What if you were born to a prostitute and followed life in her footsteps because you did not realize there were other pathways open to you? I know these might be extreme examples, but everyone has a story and sources of pain and heartache we may not know or understand.They may have made choices we condemn or disagree with, leaving them mired with despair.
And that is where hope comes in. There is One who understands and He can heal everything. He knows the bitterness of betrayal and heartache, He has experienced every pain and sorrow and affliction known to mankind and He understands perfectly every action and thought that we can and will ever make. He understands our perspective, and the perspective of everyone else. Elder Holland also talks about how as we experience suffering we come to understand a small part of the suffering of the Saviour. And I would like to add, we come to know in part what others suffer and why they make the choices they do. I know only as I have had to face depression that I more fully understand others who suffer more deeply from depression. I know however, there is nothing He cannot heal, nothing He does not understand, nothing He cannot help us overcome, but sometimes we need to help Him help our fellow children of God. As we do this I know our own perspectives will be enriched and will help us see more clearly the pathway the Lord would have us tread.