The Lens Through Which We See
Joseph Smith’s use of a seer stone was described in a trial, it was said that when he used the stone, “all intervening obstacles were removed, and that he possessed one of the attributes of Deity, an All-Seeing-Eye.” (Purple account, Joseph Smith Testimony, 1826 trial)
Ultimately, God sees the clearest and we see very, very little in comparison. I think that whatever stresses we face in dealing with the challenges in life all have to do with our limited vision and lack of perspective.
The Nephite interpreters were described as clear “smooth three-cornered diamonds” (History of Joseph Smith by His Mother Lucy Mack Smith) that when held to the face with the outside light obscured, illuminated truth to the observer. It is fascinating to consider that the interpreters were fashioned like lenses and used with one’s eyes. A person who used them was called a “seer.”
Many in the world have their own lenses to offer us. They think that they see clearer than the servants of the Lord and even the Lord himself.
They argue that if we will only listen to their side of things, hear their stories, and keep an open mind to alternatives then maybe we too can awaken to a more progressive view of things.
Truth can indeed be found just about everywhere and it can be discovered by people that have no connection to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We certainly don’t have a monopoly on truth, no one organization or collection of books or records could contain it all.
This is not about who has what truth and to what extent, it is about our individual ability to see or discern truth by the lens we choose.
We can see not only what is good but also what is poisonous, and there is much that is poison.
Laman and Lemuel’s story could have been vastly different if they set aside the distorted lenses that they viewed their father and Nephi through.
In the scriptures are the doctrines and principles of the gospel and these form a powerful lens that can enable us to see the truth as God sees it and to identify the deceptions of the adversary.
God also offers us his Mind in the form of his Holy Spirit to enlighten our eyes so that we may see clearly. It is amazing how difficult life can be when you cannot see reality clearly.