Even though we can’t change the way we grew up, we can change our perspectives now and understand others from a biblical standpoint. If we do this, we will be able to see things from others' perspectives and help our own perspective to reflect God’s.
It's often extremely hard to shift your perspective. Shifting your perspective most likely won’t occur overnight because it requires a change in how we see or believe things. Sometimes it is important that we shift our perspectives because our current perspectives could be wrong and could go against the Bible.
Here are four practical ways to shift your perspective:
1. See Things from the Other Person’s Perspective
The first practical way to shift your perspective is to see things from the other person’s perspective. While this can be hard, it is important that we try our best to walk in the other person’s shoes. By simply trying to see things from the other person’s perspective, we can start the catalyst to change our incorrect perspectives. The perspectives that we grow up with are linked with our own worldview. Our worldview is shaped by our beliefs, those we are around, and what we are taught. Sadly, many of us grow up with an incorrect perspective that is not sensitive to others.
Take the incentive to see things from the other person’s point of view. Whether your sibling, your parents, or a stranger on the street, try to see things through their eyes. This can be difficult; however, it is the first step to shifting your perspective. As someone who has struggled with a myriad of mental illnesses over the course of my life and still continues to struggle, I often have to step away from my own perspective and look at the view of those around me. It can be very draining at times for those close to me, and sometimes I have to know when I can be open and know the times when I need to keep my struggles between God, my therapist, and myself. When I look from the perspective of my loved ones, it can be too much at times and I can better understand why they get upset or do not know how to help.
When we are open to seeing things from other people’s perspectives, the more we can shift our perspective and begin to understand others better. We don’t need to live behind rose-colored glasses and think everything is perfect as it is because it’s not. The world is filled with corruption, racism, and sexism. These problems are sin problems, but they are also due to others not looking at the other person’s perspective, and more than that, they are not looking out for the betterment of their fellow man or woman. Believers need to be equipped with the knowledge of the Bible to be open to seeing things from other people’s perspectives. Even if we can’t exactly relate to them, we cannot shift our perspective unless we see things from their point of view.
2. Remind Yourself of the Truth in God’s Word
A second practical way to shift your perspective is to remind yourself of the truth in God’s Word. Sadly, not many individuals read their Bible daily so they cannot be encouraged by God’s Word. In order to shift our perspectives, we need to remind ourselves of the truth in God’s Word, and this cannot happen unless we read the Bible. Often our views are distorted, and it is only through reading the Bible that our perspective can align with what God says.
Instead of agreeing with every learned perspective, we need to run it against Scripture. If we have been taught an incorrect view about others, such as accepting racism, we need to stop that belief in its tracks. We need to weigh this perspective against the Bible, and then we will see that the Bible completely condemns racism. God created all people equally in His image (Genesis 1:27). All people are unconditionally loved by God, and that will never change. In the same way, there is no reason for racism to exist in the modern day. Even from the young age of a child, I never understood the racism that was so prevalent around me as, personally, most of my best friends were of a different skin color than me.
It is only when we see the incorrect view of our perspective that we can begin to change. We can change by bringing ourselves back to the truth of God’s Word. Our perspectives and our worldview need to be rooted in the Bible. By doing this, we reflect God’s love for the world, and we will begin to see things from God’s perspective. Shifting our perspective can be new and different, yet it is a beautiful thing to behold when someone changes an incorrect perspective to a perspective that reflects the Bible.
3. Take a Moment to See Why You Are Thinking This Way
A third practical way to shift your perspective is to take a moment to see why you are thinking this way. It is crucial during these times to pause and think things over. Ask yourself, “Why am I seeing things this way?” A perspective that is not in agreement with the Bible needs to be changed. We can shift our perspectives by taking time to understand why we are thinking a certain way. Maybe your perspective tells you to only associate with those who are of the same status as you and to avoid anyone who doesn’t match up with your ideals. This is a perspective that needs to be challenged and changed.
Taking the time to shift your thinking and perspective will help you recognize incorrect perspectives and take the incentive to change your perception. Many of us, myself included, grew up with incorrect views, teachings, and perspectives. Even though we can’t change the way we grew up, we can change our perspectives now and understand others from a biblical standpoint. If we do this, we will be able to see things from others' perspectives and help our own perspective to reflect God’s.
4. Pray for a Different Perspective
A fourth practical way to shift your perspective is to pray for a different perspective. If we are ever in need of anything, we need to go to God in prayer. He loves to hear from us, and He will answer prayers in accordance with His will. When you pray to God, ask Him to help you change your perspective to better reflect His. While this is not a common prayer, it is one that all people need to pray in order to help them understand other people better.
Through prayer and asking God to help you have a perspective that reflects His, you will be able to be the hands and feet of Jesus to the lost world. As believers, we don’t need to carry around incorrect perspectives or perspectives that do more harm than good. Instead, we must pray and strive for a view that glorifies God. No matter how hard it is or how embedded the false perspectives are in your heart, God can help you shift your perspective. Shifting your perspective can help not only others but will also help you bring glory to God.
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Vivian Bricker loves Jesus, studying the Word of God, and helping others in their walk with Christ. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master's degree in Christian Ministry with a deep academic emphasis in theology. Her favorite things to do are spending time with her family and friends, reading, and spending time outside. When she is not writing, she is embarking on other adventures.