Saturday, May 19, 2012

Always Ready to Serve

Recently--not completely sure why--my mind was turned to a talk given close to two years ago given by President Uchtdorf of the First Presidency. His talk entitled Pride and the Priesthood was mainly focused on the effects of pride and how it can damage our lives and the lives of those around us. He taught how we can avoid pride and look towards the Savior as our perfect example of love and humility, so that we may overcome the pride we may have.
As I sought to understand and apply what he taught I learned that God gives us the opportunity and blessing of being an instrument in His hands to bless His children. I learned just what kind of person He expects us to be so that may serve Him. President Uchtdorf defines the attribute of humility and teaches with a simple "pen" analogy of just it means be Always Ready to Serve.

"Some suppose that humility is about beating ourselves up. Humility does not mean convincing ourselves that we are worthless, meaningless, or of little value. Nor does it mean denying or withholding the talents God has given us. We don’t discover humility by thinking less of ourselves; we discover humility by thinking less about ourselves. It comes as we go about our work with an attitude of serving God and our fellowman.
Humility directs our attention and love toward others and to Heavenly Father’s purposes. Pride does the opposite. Pride draws its energy and strength from the deep wells of selfishness. The moment we stop obsessing with ourselves and lose ourselves in service, our pride diminishes and begins to die.

"My dear brethren, there are so many people in need whom we could be thinking about instead of ourselves. And please don’t ever forget your own family, your own wife. There are so many ways we could be serving. We have no time to become absorbed in ourselves.

"I once owned a pen that I loved to use during my career as an airline captain. By simply turning the shaft, I could choose one of four colors. The pen did not complain when I wanted to use red ink instead of blue. It did not say to me, 'I would rather not write after 10:00 p.m., in heavy fog, or at high altitudes.' The pen did not say, 'Use me only for important documents, not for the daily mundane tasks.' With greatest reliability it performed every task I needed, no matter how important or insignificant. It was always ready to serve.

"In a similar way we are tools in the hands of God. When our heart is in the right place, we do not complain that our assigned task is unworthy of our abilities. We gladly serve wherever we are asked. When we do this, the Lord can use us in ways beyond our understanding to accomplish His work."

 I know as we strive to live these principles taught that our lives will be blessed, our families will be blessed, and those we have the wonderful opportunity to serve will be blessed. Don't just take my word for it though, try it for yourselves. As we strive together to follow the example of Jesus Christ and serve God's children with all faith, hope, and humility we will see the blessings come and lives will be changed. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.