Monday, August 25, 2014

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 53]

This morning my boss asked me the difference between sicknesses and infirmities as referred to in these verses:
11 And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.
12 And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities. (Alma 7:11-12)
His boss happened to be nearby and pointed out that the root word of infirmities is firm, which supported my argument that another word for infirmities could be weaknesses. If you're in-firm, you're not steady. You're weak. (Which can definitely be a result or symptom of sickness, but does not merely refer to being ill.)

Then I went on to say that it doesn't even necessarily mean physical weaknesses, but all those parts of us that are less than steady. Our bad habits, our personality flaws, all our deviations from the ideal can be infirmities. (The intern agreed with me [indirectly - she wasn't involved in this particular conversation], saying that as a perfectionist she knows so well how infirm she is and how what she needs to work on are unique to her -- unique to her and Christ through his Atonement.)

This ties in well with the idea of enabling grace. Christ's grace that enables us to act in power, to overcome our challenges both external and internal.
27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them. (Ether 12:27)
 All we need to do is come unto Christ. He will open our eyes to our infirmities and give us the strength to overcome.

Monday, August 11, 2014

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 52]

This past week I had some car trouble. A couple days in I was like, "Please don't make this be a gospel analogy" but it was.

So what happened is I started hearing a scraping noise at low speeds. Not all the time, though. Just sometimes. I figured I must've run over something (like a branch or some plastic) that got stuck under my car.

For a little while I thought I would wait to see if it removed itself.

Then, when the scraping continued, I checked under the car a few times. I did that for a while, reasoning that I couldn't see very well in the dark parking garage, or in the bright sunlight of evening when I got home. When conditions cooperated, I did a thorough check. But I couldn't find anything.

I even sort of looked at the brakes and other miscellaneous parts, but I didn't know what I was looking at. (By this point I had really given up hope that this wasn't a gospel analogy.)

Finally I determined that I had to take it in. And man, was it expensive. And preventable, if I'd paid more attention to my car. But at least all is well now (I hope).

Rest assured that I have taken this message to heart (the paying attention to my car message as well as the gospel analogy message), since it was definitely for me.

Sometimes we have problems in our lives that we are determined to figure out on our own. I can do almost anything, surely I can overcome this as well! But I can't always do everything on my own. (Especially since I tend to procrastinate until the time is 'right' to tackle the problem.)

Enter humility. I have to accept that this is not a problem I can solve. Then, enter the Atonement! Let the Professional handle this one.

And I shouldn't wait too long otherwise it'll cost more. That's unfortunate.

But, in the end, all will be well.

Monday, August 4, 2014

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 51]

Today is exactly a year from when I first began my Mormon Mondays. To celebrate, I just read through a year's worth (minus the times I used Scripture Mastery Times as my MM) of faith-promoting thoughts by me (though primarily by other people).

It has been really good for me to have this...responsibility, as it were. It gives me a reason to spend a little more time pondering the gospel. It's also been difficult, not least because I have a lot of friends that do a much better job at discussing and applying the gospel. That makes me almost not want to share my paltry thoughts (I mean, check out this blog, would ya? I like it a lot.)

I just realized it sounded like I'm quitting now that it's been a year, and I'm inadequate.

I'm not.

This is, however, a commitment to do better at these. I may be the only one that's noticed how long it's been since I posted on a Monday, and how often I just use Mormon Channel graphics (which I do like, but often feel like cop-outs if I don't have anything to say about them). I can do better.

(This is a stretch, but I figured I'd go ahead and use another Mormon Channel graphic to cement the deal so I need to make it fit, so...I am not defining myself by my transgressions, but I'm letting my past mistakes [and I'm not just talking my lackluster MMs here] guide my goals for the future. That's what God wants me to do, see?)

Well. We can surmise what God wants us to do with our lives, even though it's not specifically talking about what He would rather. So let's listen to the right people!