In Another’s Shoes
There are many different ways for us to learn. We almost always try to learn from our own perspectives. However, once in a while it can be a good idea to take a step back and try and look at things from another perspective—put yourself in someone else’s shoes.
When looking at things from another’s point of view, we may discover things that we would never have considered otherwise. How do we put ourselves in another person’s shoes? There are a variety of ways. We may often do it without considering it. When reading a book we tend to see things from the main character’s point of view. When watching a film, we get the director’s point of view on a story. Or we could use our own imaginations and try to imagine ourselves in another’s position.
Let’s use the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts 8:26-40) as an example. After he was baptized what would he be feeling? What would he tell those back in Ethiopia?
To the first question, Christians can probably imagine what he was feeling after he was baptized, since we would have experienced a similar thing. There would be the feelings of joy and relief. Relief, knowing that his sins were forgiven and joy, knowing that he has the hope of eternal life.
It may be more thought provoking to try and imagine what the Ethiopian eunuch would say when he returned to Ethiopia. He most likely told others of the Good News that he had just learned, since he was so happy about learning the truth and converting, for we know “he went on his way rejoicing” (Acts 8:39).
If I were in his “shoes” I would probably start with where I began. Phillip started teaching from the passage that the eunuch was reading (Acts 8:32-35). Therefore, when telling others of what had taken place and trying to teach them, I would start from that same passage (also found in Isa. 53:7-8), take what Phillip had taught, and pass that knowledge along—the knowledge of Jesus.
Likewise, we today can and should do the same as what the Ethiopian Eunuch may have done. We should work with others and try and teach them about Jesus and the hope and joy that they can receive by obeying the Gospel.
-- John Thrower Jr.