Sunday, December 9, 2012

A slap in the face

I am a very prideful person. This talk was such a wonderful slap in the face of reality. It was quoted by Richard G. Miller in the talk posted previously. BTW I only post the versions of talks and speeches with a possibility of listening to the audio. I listen to them at work. You can listen to them while you work, go to class, put on your makeup, do a handstand, or anything. Really, it's easy. Listen to them!

Beware of Pride
 - Ezra Taft Benson

“The proud stand more in fear of men’s judgment than of God’s judgment. Would we not do well to have the pleasing of God as our motive rather than to try to elevate ourselves above our brother and outdo another?”

Pride is a sin that can readily be seen in others but is rarely admitted in ourselves. Most of us consider pride to be a sin of those on the top, such as the rich and the learned, looking down at the rest of us. There is, however, a far more common ailment among us—and that is pride from the bottom looking up. It is manifest in so many ways, such as faultfinding, gossiping, backbiting, murmuring, living beyond our means, envying, coveting, withholding gratitude and praise that might lift another, and being unforgiving and jealous.”

“The scriptures tell us that “only by pride cometh contention.” The scriptures testify that the proud are easily offended and hold grudges. They withhold forgiveness to keep another in their debt and to justify their injured feelings. The proud do not receive counsel or correction easily. Defensiveness is used by them to justify and rationalize their frailties and failures.
Pride adversely affects all our relationships—our relationship with God and His servants, between husband and wife, parent and child, employer and employee, teacher and student, and all mankind. Our degree of pride determines how we treat our God and our brothers and sisters. Christ wants to lift us to where He is. Do we desire to do the same for others? Think of what pride has cost us in the past and what it is now costing us in our own lives, our families, and the Church. Think of the repentance that could take place with lives changed, marriages preserved, and homes strengthened, if pride did not keep us from confessing our sins and forsaking them.

The antidote for pride is humility—meekness, submissiveness. Either we can choose to be humble or we can be compelled to be humble. Alma said, “Blessed are they who humble themselves without being compelled to be humble.”
We can choose to humble ourselves by receiving counsel and chastisement.
We can choose to humble ourselves by forgiving those who have offended us.
We can choose to humble ourselves by rendering selfless service.
We can choose to humble ourselves by getting to the temple more frequently.
We can choose to humble ourselves by confessing and forsaking our sins and being born of God.
We can choose to humble ourselves by loving God, submitting our will to His, and putting Him first in our lives.

Let us choose to be humble."

It was difficult cutting out only a portion of the talk to put up as quotes on here. I wanted to put so many but had to cut it down because I knew nobody would read them if I put much more! Like I said in the last post, I have found my obvious weakness and I'm working to overcome it. I hope that as time passes that I will get better and that it will be very natural to me. I want humility to be one of my strengths. As I've been pondering this topic, my mind kept going back to Alma 32:16 "blessed are they who humble themselves without being compelled to be humble". I have definitely been compelled to become humble and I think that is a big reason why I'm writing all these things on my blog. I was compelled to become humble because recently I've needed to turn to my Father in Heaven more for peace and comfort. I hope that at least one person will read this blog and evaluate their own life and where they can improve. I hope that through this someone may choose to be humble rather than be compelled to be humble. Being compelled to be humble often includes pain and sorrow and this may help someone to avoid that. 
So please go read this talk and find ways to improve, go to the temple, show charity to someone, forgive and forget, and most importantly, choose to be humble.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Self Control

There are some real gems out there as far as talks on gospel subjects. Recently, I have listened to some, honestly, multiple times a day. I had put together a post with three talks and my thoughts on them because I'm so excited about them and want everybody to read them but it soon became really really long. It is taking all my self control to post one talk and my thoughts at a time. So here is the first. I would suggest that you read or listen to it but if perchance you are too lazy right now, keep reading and you'll find some quotes that I pulled from it and added my own emphasis with italics.

Repentance and Forgiveness in Marriage
  -Richard G. Miller

A clip of this BYU devotional was shown in one of my classes and it drew me in. I had to look it up right then and listen to the rest.  It provided me a very blunt lesson on pride and forgiveness which was right up my alley of needs. It also gave me an interest to looking further into understanding the healing power of the atonement. From this stemmed a myriad of other talks I have found which will be posted soon.

How do these couples go from ecstatic levels of love and happiness to frequent conflict, bitterness, and, in many cases, eventual divorce? ... a lack of repentance and a lack of forgiveness.

In order to be effective, an apology must be sincere and heartfelt. Besides a sincere apology, repentance includes striving to forsake our shortcomings and weaknesses

In my experience, there are two things that often stand in the way of saying “I’m sorry” and repenting. The first thing is that we sometimes don’t know that we have done something hurtful or offensive to our spouse. The second major obstacle to repenting of our sins and mistakes in marriage is pride.

The essence of repentance is trying to change ourselves in ways that will make us better people. On the other hand, the foundation of pride is the desire to cover up our own weaknesses and focus on changing our partner’s behavior and weaknesses.  

In order for a marriage to be successful, there needs to be more than repentance; there also needs to be forgiveness.

What do we do when we simply can’t forgive, forget, and move on? In these cases we need to rely on the healing power of the Atonement.

Thus the healing power of the Atonement extends beyond those who repent; it also heals those who sorrow, grieve, and are in pain.

May we be willing to take responsibility for our own sins and weaknesses that create stress and hurt in our marriages. May we use the healing power of the Atonement to overcome our sins, imperfections, and weaknesses. May we use the power of the Atonement to heal our hurts and sorrows so that we can fully forgive.

If I ever want to be the wife I want my husband to have, them I must take the initiative and apply these concepts to my life now.  There are so many ways to improve with these skills for the relationships outside of marriage such as with roommates, siblings, parents, or friends. Like I said, this talk sent me finding many other talks that I cannot stop listening to. One of those I will post about soon and I'm really excited about it.

President Hinckley said:
"We will not become perfect in a day or a month or a year. We will not accomplish it in a lifetime, but we can keep trying, starting with our more obvious weaknesses and gradually converting them to strengths as we go forward with our lives." (The Quest for Excellence, Ensign, Sep 1999)

So with this talk and the next one I will post, I have found an obvious weakness that I will work toward becoming a strength. And I've determined to take it one day at a time. Today, will be remembering that everybody is a child of God. Not an adult, but a child. Toward children we are typically more helpful and understanding. Imagine how we would look at and treat people differently if we pictured them as children. I cannot wait to find out today!

Roommate run!