Conquering Spiritual Blindness

by Aubrey Barzee

Forgiven by Greg Olsen

I’ve always had poor eyesight. I can’t imagine what it would feel like to wake up in the morning and just be able to see my surroundings clearly! Fortunately, we have tools like glasses and contact lenses to bring me clarity and focus when I physically can’t do that myself. Sometimes, we may be affected by spiritual blindness too. It can be easy to become caught up in things that don’t really matter and lose sight of what is most important. 

The Book of Mormon prophet Jacob warned his people against spiritual blindness. He taught them where this blindness can come from, and he also told them exactly how to overcome it. Jacob said that this blindness “came by looking beyond the mark” (Jacob 4:14). He also taught, “The Spirit speaketh the truth and lieth not. Wherefore, it speaketh of things as they really are, and of things as they really will be; wherefore, these things are manifested unto us plainly, for the salvation of our souls” (Jacob 4:13). 

Focusing on the Savior and inviting the Spirit to be with us is how we can avoid this spiritual blindness! Amid the chaos and confusion of the world, we have a beacon of light to look to as a guide—Jesus Christ. He will grant us perspective, helping us see clearly through the mists of darkness we are sometimes surrounded by. 

Wilford Woodruff taught similar principles in a discourse to the Saints in 1857. He said, “When you look around and see the state of the world on the one hand, and what we have to perform on the other, and what the kingdom of God has got to arrive at in order to fulfil its destiny and the revelations of Jesus Christ, our chief object should be to build up the kingdom of God and roll it on.” He acknowledged that even though so much is going on in the world around us, our main focus should be Jesus Christ and His doctrine and kingdom. That is how we can have the power and capacity to overcome whatever we may be facing in our lives. 

Jacob, Wilford Woodruff, and many other prophets have taught about how we can overcome spiritual blindness and remember to focus on the mark, Jesus Christ. What does this mean to you? What helps you keep your thoughts, actions, and goals centered on our Savior? 

Aubrey Barzee is a Public Relations Intern for the Wilford Woodruff Papers Foundation. She is from Kansas City, Missouri, and currently studies at Brigham Young University. Aubrey is majoring in Exercise and Wellness and studying in the Seminary and Institute teaching program. She had the opportunity as a missionary to come to know Jesus Christ better and serve the people in the Oregon Portland Mission, which she recently returned from. She has loved being a part of this project, where she can share her love of the Savior and His restored gospel. She loves learning about the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and is inspired by the journals and life of the prophet Wilford Woodruff.


1. Discourse by Wilford Woodruff, February 22, 1857, p. 3, The Wilford Woodruff Papers,