Personal Online Journal

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Thursday, January 17, 2013

His Love Will Find You

I love the hymn Come Unto Jesus

Come unto Jesus, ye heavy laden,
Care-worn and fainting, by sin oppressed.
He'll safely guide you unto that haven
Where all who trust him may rest.

Come unto Jesus; He'll ever heed you,
Though in the darkness you've gone astray.
His love will find you and gently lead you
From darkest night into day.

Come unto Jesus; He'll surely hear you,
If you in meekness plead for his love.
Oh, know you not that angels are near you
From brightest mansions above?

Come unto Jesus from every nation,
From ev'ry land and isle of the sea.
Unto the high and lowly in station,
Ever he calls, "Come to me"

Monday, January 14, 2013

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Be Satisfied

On the way home from work yesterday I listened to this song

Rapunzel had filled her day with good activities, yet she was not satisfied.  She knew that there was something missing.  In short it was relationships with her parents, her soul-mate and others in her life.

Even human relationships cannot fully satisfy us.  Nephi said,
Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy. Hearken diligently unto me, and remember the words which I have spoken; and come unto the Holy One of Israel, and feast upon that which perisheth not, neither can be corrupted, and let your soul delight in fatness. (1 Ne 9:51)
There are many good and better things we can fill our lives with.  None of them will matter if we don't find and hold on to the best and vital things of life.  This scripture identifies some of those things as
- Come unto Jesus Christ
- Feast upon the scriptures and the other words of God
- Delight in the abundance the Lord will bless you with as you follow the guidance of the Holy Ghost

President Packer gave an illustration that came to mind about being satisfied.  He told a story about someone who lived in the forest.  When winter came there was not much food for the deer to eat.  They decided to feed the deer hay.  The deer loved it.  Later though, they started to die.  They were eating but were not being nourished.  The hay did not have the nutrients they need to be healthy.

In the same way, we can fill our lives with food-like substances.  Something that looks like and perhaps even tastes like food and is very attractive.  But we will starve spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically if we are not seeking out and preserving sources that really satisfy us.

How will you know if you are starving?  You feel it.  You will sense it.  Perhaps you recognize it now.  I know I do.  Things that I know will not satisfy me.  Ways of acting and reacting to my loved ones that do not give me the results that I want.  If I am to have satisfying relationships, I must follow the perfect Example to nurture them.  I must do as Jesus would do.  Or at the least stretch towards it, asking for His Grace in my efforts.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Seek First to Understand

"If you want to interact effectively with me, to influence me - your spouse, your child, your neighbor, your boss, your coworker, your friend - you first need to understand me. And you can't do that with technique alone. If I sense you're using some technique, I sense duplicity, manipulation. I wonder why you're doing it, what your motives are. And I don't feel safe enough to open myself up to you." (Stephen R. Covey, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, p 238)

"When another person speaks, we're usually 'listening' at one of four levels. We may be ignoring another person, not really listening at all. We may practice pretending. 'Yeah.  Uh-huh. Right.'  We may practice selective listening, hearing only certain parts on the conversation. We often do this when we are listening to the constant chatter of a preschool child. Or we may even practice attentive listening, paying attention and focusing energy on the words are being said. But very few of us ever practice the fifth level, the highest form of listening, empathetic listening.
When I say empathetic listening, I mean listening with the intent to understand. I mean seeking first to understand, to really understand. It's a completely different paradigm.

Empathetic (from empathy) listening gets inside another person's frame of reference. You look out through it, you see the world the way they see the world, you understand how they feel.
Empathy is not sympathy. Sympathy is a form of agreement, a form of judgement. And it is sometimes the more appropriate emotion and response. But people often feed on sympathy. It makes them dependent. The Essenes of empathetic listening is not that you agree with someone; it's that you fully, deeply, understand that person, emotionally as we'll as intellectually."