Have you ever watched "So You Think You Can Dance" ? I LOVE it. There is something about the way so many of those contestants dance, combined with the right music, that is so moving and inspiring. I can't dance...at all. I can't sing. And I would give anything to play beautiful music on the piano, violin, or guitar. Those things just touch my heart, and I am so glad there are others out there who are willing to share their talent with people like me who just don't got it!
What I love about life is the realization that there is so much beauty in this world, so much goodness, so much that inspires and uplifts and propels people to be better. All we have to do is find it, hold onto it, and try not to let it go when all the negativity of this world comes crashing down around us.
There are so many things that bring me down. Often, I let them. Mostly, I try so hard to not let the difficult things of life take the joy, light, and beauty away from my life. That's why I love dance shows, singing shows, good music on the radio, beautiful art, reading words that make me laugh, cry, sigh, ponder, smile, and even kick myself for being so, well...less than what I know I can be. I love the morning sunlight shining through the windows, warming my feet while I eat a big bowl of cereal. I love to listen to the wind rustling the leaves on trees, birds chirping, and there is even something pleasant about the distant rumble of a lawn mower on a hot summer day. I love the smell of rain, crunchy granola, clean sheets, and the feel of sand running through my fingers. I love it when I smile at someone in the store and they actually smile back! I Love walking through rows and rows of fabric, ribbons and buttons. I love taking a few plain sheets of felt and turning them into something cute and crafty. And isn't there something magical about bookstores? Barnes & Noble....yes please!
Over the past year, I have struggled with lots of different kinds of frustrations...the kinds that every person deals with because of life and its imperfectness. I can stop any man or woman on the street and most likely they will have struggled with frustrations similar to my own....feeling misunderstood, judged unfairly, underappreciated, degraded, overlooked or ignored. As a part of life, we will at times feel hurt and alone... feel despair, grief, anguish...
We must know sorrow so that we can know true happiness. Our frustrations are caused by our own actions, attitudes, words, faults and imperfections. Often they come from outside sources. No one wants to feel down because of the hard things in life, and no one should act in a way to bring others down. Negativity because of trials never did anyone any good. I think we've all learned that lesson a time or two!
Focus on the beauty of life! And then shake off all the other stuff. Sometimes easier said than done.
But each day we should make a good effort.
We are so much more capable than we often give ourselves credit for. Don't seek revenge or be spiteful. Don't hold grudges. Resist the urge to tarnish another's character or spread idle gossip. Give people the benefit of the doubt. Don't assume you know a person's intentions, feelings, reasons behind actions, or where they are coming from. Most often we don't know, most often we don't take the time to know or try and understand before we make up our minds about how things are. Everyone is fighting a battle, and every one of us needs a helping hand. Everyone wants to have a larger portion of the goodness, joy, light, and beauty of life, right? Each of us has the choice to be a help or hinderment there.
I am sorry for all the times I didn't make the better choice. There are burdens I have to carry everyday, regrets I have, moments in the past I wish I could re-do... there are words that can't be taken back. Often it may seem like no amount of apologizing will ever repair whatever damage we might have caused. The most we can do is press forward and do our best and remember to stay true to ourselves. I can learn from my past and become a better person. I know my parents, especially my dad, have felt the sorrow of past actions, and wondered if I would ever forgive them. I cannot even imagine the inner turmoil my dad lived with and might still live with because of those times he did not make good choices. As I have grown older, I can better relate with him and what he experienced, and I have so much more respect for him.
During the April General Conference, there was a talk given by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf that hit me with powerful force. It brought to my remembrance the times when I made poor choices. It isn't easy to admit our own wrongdoings. But I can learn so much more from my own mistakes if I just focus on me and where I went wrong instead of justifying my own actions and placing the greater blame upon someone else. I refer to this talk often, I love it, and I am trying so hard to become a better person because of it. (you know, since I was such a terrible person before!) Here is the link if you are interested:
"The Merciful Obtain Mercy"
I don't have much to do with my mom because of the past. Certain hurts run deep. But I owe her a chance. I struggle with trusting her. Because of the tramatic experiences I had as a child, it can be hard to trust someone once that trust has been broken time after time after time. As I grew into adulthood, my mom and I still faced a lot of challenges, especially after my brother lived with us. It has been hard to overcome everything. But I am sorry for the anger, resentment, bitterness, and lack of mercy I showed her. It has taken me a long time to forgive her. I am taking baby steps, very tiny baby steps towards the hope that things can be better between us.
We all face trials and frustrations. That's life. It's hard. But that is not where our focus should be. The Savior said, "I am the bread and the life: He that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst." (John 6:35) Our focus should be on our Savior, in doing good, thinking good, speaking good, and seeking goodness.
President James E. Faust said, "The Lord has a great work for each of us to do. You may wonder how this can be. You may feel that there is nothing special or superior about you or your ability...
The Lord can do remarkable miracles with a person of ordinary ability who is humble, faithful, and diligent in serving the Lord and seeks to improve himself. This is because God is the ultimate source of power."
I am so grateful for these little ones that Heavenly Father has entrusted to me to care for. They are my greatest blessings, and no matter how frustrated, angry, or sad I might be because of life, at the end of the day they are what matters most. I am so glad I get to experience all the things I love and share it all with my children.
5 weeks ago