Friday, May 27, 2011

Kindness ACT 1

I was recently moved by a talk that I read from General Conference by Henry B Eyring called "Opportunities to Do Good". The talk's main subject was being helpful and who and how it helps. I have always thought that each situation we are put in our lives whether it be having children, working, suffering, or anything else is to help us somehow understand our Heavenly Father. One of the best ways we can come to know our Father in Heaven and his love is to serve those around us. When we serve we become His hands in helping and better come to and understanding of the love He feels towards us. As I reflected on this talk I started to think of the service in my life. 

One of my favorite stories of service took place when I was a wee lad, of like 14, (way back in the day). My parents had just divorced and my father had left our family with very little furniture, it was to the point where my mom was sleeping on a futon (not fun). Not long after the initial situation, we received a knock on the door one night. When we answered we realized it was a group of the relief society ladies in our ward who kinda barged in (politely... because they're ladies) carrying furniture that they had gathered together after they had heard of our situation. That day was a remarkable day for my family and I as we felt the love of God through those ladies.

The months that followed were just as much of an adjustment as the beginning. Those faithful daughters of God continued to pull our family in and spoil us with an abundance of love. I remember I wanted to do something extra nice for my mom for her birthday. I decided I was going to paint her room and her furniture to match, to show my appreciation for all the extra effort that was needed on her part due to the circumstances. Tricky part was I wanted it to be a semi-suprise. Like I said I was young, so I don't even remember how it got set up (early Alzheimers), but the same people came to help me buy paint and  keep me from completely ruining my mother's room. They also organized a birthday party at one of their houses, which was a bonus. It turned out to be a very good birthday for my mother when she needed it the most (I remember that part).

Simple acts of kindness have the ability to impact people's lives far beyond we will ever know. Their acts of kindness have influenced me until this day, and have made me watchful for the needs of others. My call to everyone is to find a way to reach out, make sure you are in the situation to help those in need when they need it the most. Heavenly Father sent us to earth to dwell as a family, as brothers and sisters, it is our responsibility to seek out those whose heads hang helplessly low. Let us find the love of Christ as we serve those around us.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

He Suffered For Me

Jesus Christ suffered the pains, afflictions and sins so that he could come to our aid and we could return to live with God again if we so chose to follow Him.<-True that.

That's a lot of sin! That's a lot of pain! That's a lot of love!<-True that.

Focusing on me (because that's what I do best), Christ suffered in the Garden so that He could help my mom put up with my stubbornness. Christ suffered in the Garden so that my mom could put up with my laziness. Christ suffered in the Garden to help my mom laugh at those times I would crash both her and my car (not at the same time... I'm not that talented). Christ suffered in the Garden so that He could help my mom have strength to stay up with me all those nights I procrastinated homework, not to bring up all the times I just needed someone to talk to.  Christ suffered in the Garden to help my mom find love for me even when I would spout off mean things to her. Christ suffered in the Garden because he knew all the patience my mom was going to need raising me. 

Christ suffered in the Garden so that my sister could make it through my mean big brother phase, all the mean things I would call her, not thinking of how much I could potentially damage her. Christ suffered in the Garden so that my sister would have the heart to forgive me and find love for me, so that we could be best of friends. Christ suffered in the Garden so that after all those years of constantly fighting with my brother,after the broken lights, broken humidifier, broken TV,  and so on he would somehow find good in me and become one of my biggest idols. Christ suffered in the Garden so that my friends would still find love for me after all the pain I put them through, most of the time because I was selfish (I can be pretty good at that). Christ suffered in the Garden to help my teachers, co-workers, employers, family, friends, enemies... all put up with me.

Christ suffered in the Garden to make up for everything I lack. Christ suffered in the Garden to help me through the loss of friends, loved ones and so on. Christ suffered in the Garden so that I can get back to my Heavenly Father. Christ suffered in the Garden so that I can wash myself of my sins and move on. Christ suffered in the Garden because I don't have what it takes to do it myself. Christ suffered in the Garden because He loved me and was worried about my salvation. So in the end Christ suffered in the Garden for me.

I'm glad that I have some knowledge of my Savior. I'm glad I can share this message with everyone. I hope everyone comes to realize just a portion of what Christ has done for them. Christ suffered in the Garden and died on the cross for us, let's LIVE our appreciation.

Friday, May 6, 2011

The Paycheck Of Humility

Many people in today's world view humility as a sign of weakness, timidity and fear. As I started to ponder on that statement I couldn't help but think about the Savior's life. Jesus Christ led the most courageous life, not any one of us would ever have the strength and will power to do what He did. Jesus Christ is the perfect example of humility, while showing the most courage, strength and enduring will power. His life was so successful and everlasting because He knew where His strength lied, He knew who knew best, He relied on His Father's will and everything He had been blessed with to fulfill His calling.

Reflecting on my life and the times I was more humble and the times where I was more prideful than humble, I asked myself how it paid off. As I've pondered on this battle of pride and humility, I have recognized one of my greatest blessings from humility.

In my life I have realized that when I am prideful I find myself aggravated. I find myself comparing myself to others. I find myself full of contention. When I am prideful I find myself saying, "Well why did they get that job position, I am better than them, I've worked harder then them, I'm more qualified than them." These thoughts too often escalate to a negative attitude and a person who not too many people desire to be around.

When I am prideful I find myself focusing on negative thoughts and I have come to realize that at those times I am so full of hate that I stop applying as much effort and talents to the situation I am currently in. Why try, no one recognizes anyway. At times I even find myself trying to belittle them and put forth all my effort in showing I'm better than them, which in end, I end up belittling myself. but at least I've proved my point. Right?

On the other hand, again in my life, when I am the more humble I find myself patiently waiting and having faith that when Heavenly Father feels necessary to put me where he sees best, that it will benefit me the most. I find myself exhorting my greater efforts to the position I am currently in, instead of using effort toward envious feelings. I am less stressed, more happy and am better able to fulfill my duties. I also can focus on learning from those above me and applying beneficial techniques. Then when the time comes, when I am needed, I am thankful, I feel qualified and I rely, once again, on the Lord to magnify my talents and abilities. Also, people who I am in stewardship over are more attentive and respect me more because I am focused on serving them and magnifying my specific duties.

I am positive there are many other ways humility pays off. Test it out and see how it improves your life to be humble compared to prideful. I know that just like the Savior our life will be of more impact and it will in turn lead us to greater happiness.