Eye of the Beholder

They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder. That means things look different depending on your perspective.

Take the Rocky Mountains, for example. If you live along the front range like I do, you get to see them up close every day. They’re one of the most beautiful mountain ranges on earth, stretching 3,000 miles from Canada to Mexico.

Maybe one of the reasons the Rocky Mountains seem so beautiful to you and me is that we live in the 21st century. We navigate the Rocky Mountains with ease and comfort on modern roads. Two hundred years ago, homesteaders crossed the mountains in covered wagons, not luxury cars. There were no convenient stops along the way or weather forecasts to predict winter storms. The Rocky Mountains weren’t beautiful. They were rugged and dangerous.

Perspective can change everything. A spike in gas prices might be inconvenient for you but a hardship for somebody else. Your house could be bathed in sunshine while a family miles away is sheltering from a storm. Or maybe life has you smiling from ear to ear but your neighbor wonders if his life will ever be the same.

It’s easy to be cynical about people who don’t see the world the way we do. But they could be fighting a battle we know nothing about. Rather than assuming the worst of people, it’s better to unclench our fist and extend a hand of grace instead.

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