As Elder Ardern began to take out his object lesson for his message, I was curious. He brought out a chain and then proceeded to explain that many times, different chains keep people from performing their assigned tasks effectively and efficiently. He then asked us what these chains represented, and one by one the answers came. It was a well presented lesson, guided and inspired by the Spirit, and one I truly understood.
Today, I tried to think about what I learned from that training and reflected on what’s currently going on with me and my calling. I asked myself: “Do I still have chains binding my hands and keeping me from doing my best in the performance of my call?” “Have I set myself free from selfishness, envy, idleness, and pride?” “Do I easily get offended when things don’t go my way?” “Am I teachable?” “Do I listen?” “Am I willing to share without being asked?” “Do I go the extra mile?” ” Do I take time to study my duties and responsibilities?” “Am I open to suggestions and recommendations?” “Am I willing to listen and obey my priesthood leaders in their decisions, even if those decisions I don’t agree with?” “When someone questions my decisions, do I respond or react?” “Am I willing to sacrifice my personal preferences for the good of the organization or the plans and projects we’re doing?”
I still have a long way to go, so many weaknesses to work on. I have been discouraged a lot of times, frustrated, felt alone, felt sad, tired, and helpless. But I know one thing that I can never ignore: this is the Lord’s work, and He expects me to perform my duties to the best of my abilities because I accepted the call when it was extended to me. I also know another truth – the work will progress without me, but I will never learn and develop my fullest potential if I neglect my duties and my responsibilities. This is a privilege given to me by the Lord to learn and to progress, and to help and contribute, and for all these opportunities to grow, to learn, to contribute, to work in counsel with others, to be directed by the Spirit, and to trust in the invisible hand of God, I am grateful.
I love what I do in Public Affairs, and I am privileged and honored to be trusted with this call. I have experienced success, not individually, but as a member of a great, hardworking, committed, united, and selfless team. Then there were many times when I felt I needed to do more, times when I felt that I did not achieve the goal as planned. But I am grateful in the knowledge that what is most important to the Lord is the fact that I am trying my best .. and that I am doing it for Him, and that I am trying to be like him. Ang though I fall short most of the time, I know He is there ready to lift me up when I plead for His help!
Many times when negative thoughts came into my mind, when it felt so much easier to just give up and let go, when the tasks were so daunting and I was overwhelmed by the things I had to do, I think about all the things that I ask the Lord when I kneel down in prayer at night. Then I realize that the least I could do for all the blessings He has so abundantly given me, despite my weaknesses, is to do what I can to deserve every single blessing that I received, and will continue to receive. That thought keeps me going!