Our Eyes Were Opened

A Matter of Perspective

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Perspective is a wonderful thing.

A story floated around on the internet about a wealthy father who took his son on a trip to show him how poor people live. Where the father saw multiple dogs in the yard, the son saw that in comparison with their one dog, the other family was rich. Where the father saw only a creek, the son saw a swimming area that went on for miles, unlike his family’s swimming pool. Where the father saw lack of outdoor lighting when compared with their imported lanterns, the son saw stars. The father saw no grocery stores close and the son saw that the family grew their own food. The biggest difference in what the father saw and how the son interpreted it is the son saw that his family had walls to protect them whereas the other family had friends to protect them. The son thanked his dad for showing him how poor his family was.

There are times when we get so weighted down with things that we miss the important things like stars and friends. I do not want to romanticize the realities of poverty.  However, we have much to learn from people who live in poverty. They know things that those of us with resources may not know….how to stretch a piece of meat, how to barter for services, the value of relationships, and the joy of simply waking up in the morning.

Maybe a change of perspective would do all of us some good.


Author: bethltempleton

Beth is founder and CEO of Our Eyes Were Opened, an organization that teaches people about poverty so that they may reach out with wisdom and compassion.

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