Sunday, April 26, 2009

Sunday thoughts

Today our Sacrament meeting was about choosing happiness. One speaker used this talk given by President Uchtdorf at the last General Relief Society broadcast. I loved this talk when I first heard it, and it touched me again today.

Some excerpts:

On Creating

"The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul. No matter our talents, education, backgrounds, or abilities, we each have an inherent wish to create something that did not exist before.

Everyone can create. You don’t need money, position, or influence in order to create something of substance or beauty.

Creation brings deep satisfaction and fulfillment. We develop ourselves and others when we take unorganized matter into our hands and mold it into something of beauty.

You might say, 'I’m not the creative type. When I sing, I’m always half a tone above or below the note. I cannot draw a line without a ruler. And the only practical use for my homemade bread is as a paperweight or as a doorstop.'

If that is how you feel, think again, and remember that you are spirit daughters of the most creative Being in the universe. Isn’t it remarkable to think that your very spirits are fashioned by an endlessly creative and eternally compassionate God? Think about it—your spirit body is a masterpiece, created with a beauty, function, and capacity beyond imagination...

You may think you don’t have talents, but that is a false assumption, for we all have talents and gifts, every one of us. The bounds of creativity extend far beyond the limits of a canvas or a sheet of paper and do not require a brush, a pen, or the keys of a piano. Creation means bringing into existence something that did not exist before—colorful gardens, harmonious homes, family memories, flowing laughter."

On Compassion

"As we lift others, we rise a little higher ourselves. President Spencer W. Kimball taught, 'The more we serve our fellowmen in appropriate ways, the more substance there is to our souls.'

President Gordon B. Hinckley believed in the healing power of service. After the death of his wife, he provided a great example to the Church in the way he immersed himself in work and in serving others. It is told that President Hinckley remarked to one woman who had recently lost her husband, 'Work will cure your grief. Serve others.'

These are profound words. As we lose ourselves in the service of others, we discover our own lives and our own happiness.

President Lorenzo Snow expressed a similar thought: 'When you find yourselves a little gloomy, look around you and find somebody that is in a worse plight than yourself; go to him and find out what the trouble is, then try to remove it with the wisdom which the Lord bestows upon you; and the first thing you know, your gloom is gone, you feel light, the Spirit of the Lord is upon you, and everything seems illuminated.'

My dear sisters, I have a simple faith. I believe that as you are faithful and diligent in keeping the commandments of God, as you draw closer to Him in faith, hope, and charity, things will work together for your good. I believe that as you immerse yourselves in the work of our Father—as you create beauty and as you are compassionate to others—God will encircle you in the arms of His love. Discouragement, inadequacy, and weariness will give way to a life of meaning, grace, and fulfillment.

As spirit daughters of our Heavenly Father, happiness is your heritage."

The speaker then talked of combining the two, of being "creatively compassionate." She related an experience in another ward where a sister was hospitalized and on a medication that made her somewhat loopy. She was upset that she hadn't shaved her legs, and although it seemed a small thing, even irrelevant at the time, her Relief Society president went to visit her and shaved her legs, thereby doing something that she could not do for herself, and that soothed her spirit. I love that.

I know for me personally, that creating and finding ways to show compassion lift my spirits every single time, and to hear this confirmed by an Apostle of the Lord is incredibly validating to me. When I'm feeling down or struggling in some way, I can be proactive and do things to make myself feel better. And what could be better than meaningful service? It's amazing to me that as we build and lift others, we simultaneously do the same for ourselves.


Jill said...

This was such an interesting talk, since creativity isn't something we normally hear talked about from General Authorities.

Tasha said...

I love that talk on Creativity by President Uchdorf. It is so great to have my passion for creating not only validated, but encouraged.
It makes such a difference to make things with my hands, especially when I can share it with others.

Cecilia said...

What an amazing talk! I loved it during conference and I love it even more now after reading your post. Thanks for sharing!
Creating and helping those in need makes me a better person!

shannon said...

So many goodies here!--

Love these thoughts on creating!--I totally gain great satisfaction in creating...I like how he said that "we develop ourselves and others when we take unorganized matter into our hands and mold it into somehting of beauty..."

I think we all need endless reminders that our spirits are fashioned by an endlessly creative and eternally compassionate God--

Regarding compassion..."It is so true that when we lift others, we rise higher ourselves"--Actually, I love everything that you have quoted...!--thanks for the uplift!

Denise said...

I have always found work a sure way to get me out of the blahs. Being productive--whether in service to others, or just doing normal daily tasks--is uplifting.

Amie said...

I really loved that talk too.

I need to choose happiness more... have had to many just get through it days...

The Pink Door said...

I stumbled upon your blog from little ant design's page. Then I came across your "Sunday Thoughts" post...I starting reading..sacrament.. hmmm a fellow sister? Anyways thank you for that post it was exactly what I need to read, funny how that works? ;)

The Pink Door

Jen said...

these are great thoughts. i love it.

i think i would die if my rs president shaved my legs for me, though. :) i did chuckle at that!

rebekah said...

i think this was one of those standout conference talks, like Elder Bednar's talk about tender mercies. in my mind they both speak to important needs that each woman has -- knowing she is known by the Lord, and knowing that He understands her as a woman.

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