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The beauty of having perspective

By Tonya S. Swindell

I hadn’t paid much attention to the 3-D picture my youngest son held in his hands until he said, “Mommy, look at it this way!”

When I turned and glanced at the picture from one angle, I saw the head of a shark with a gaping mouth and menacing, sharp teeth. When I viewed the image from another point of view, the mouth appeared closed and turned up into a smile.

Perspective influenced my ability to appreciate unique aspects of what I saw.

Collins English Dictionary defined “perspective” as “a particular way of thinking about something…” Vocabulary.com stated: “If we say someone ‘has perspective,’ we mean she has a sensible outlook on life.”

Perspective influenced my daughter’s understanding of beauty. As a result she wrote “You Are Beautiful Just the Way You Are” for the 2018 Tidewaterreads.org regional poetry contest. Her award-winning poem reads as follows:

“You are beautiful just the way you are, in so many kinds of ways. You were born to be beautiful even if you fell into a tree and fell on your head. Well you got hit in the right spot because when you woke up, you were beautiful, because GOD had a plan and that plan is you will always be beautiful, no matter what. You’ll always be beautiful and you’ll always be beautiful inside and out. And if you think that someone is prettier than you, well they are not because everyone’s beautiful even if we all have different faces. We are still beautiful just the way we are — beautiful in so many kinds of ways.”

Perspective helps a person realize his or her life still has value after experiencing trials. A crisp $20 bill that becomes crumpled, creased or tattered due to frequent use, retains value within the marketplace because of its consistent worth. Similarly, a person’s beauty and value remains constant in the eyes of God.

According to Pastor Greg Laurie, “God’s greatest masterpiece of creation is you. And it is me. We are God’s greatest masterpieces. In fact, we read in Ephesians 2:10 that ‘we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them (NKJV).’”

“That word workmanship could be translated, ‘we are His work of art.’ We are His poem. Or as another translation puts it, we are God’s masterpiece. Without question, man is God’s greatest creation. Man is His crowning achievement.”

Perspective develops from our beliefs and experiences, and it impacts how we view ourselves, situations and others. It can help a person view a seemingly intolerable situation as tolerable, or an improbable circumstance as possible. Apostle Paul benefited from perspective when he wrote 2 Corinthians 4:8-9: “We are pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.”

Perspective offers a different outlook that helps a person see beautiful possibilities.

Tonya Swindell writes a blog for www.inspirenewlife.org and a teacher for Kingdom Building Equipping School (KBES.com). She can be reached at 1brightot@gmail.com.