Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Ward Unity! Unity in General!~

Lately I've been thinking about President Henry B. Eyring's talk from General Conference, October 2008. He spoke about unity and the need for unity in our lives. The title of his talk was "Our Hearts Knit as One." A few years ago I received some training from then General Relief Society President, Elaine Jack, about the need for unity in our lives. It was interesting for me to hear this topic again at this last General Conference.

President Eyring talks about how he feels members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can accomplish any purpose of the Lord when fully united in righteousness. WOW!
I have been pondering that for the last few weeks. What does this mean for me? What can I be doing that I am not doing? What are those around me doing? Why is not happening? What is going well? A lot of thoughts.

I truly believe that I can only really change myself and those under my stewardship. I cannot change those that are outside of this circle although I can influence them through my behaviors and actions. So for right now, I am concentrating on me and those in my stewardship. That would be me, my children and the Young Single Adults in the Kearney Stake. Even my husband is not on this list because I don't have stewardship over him. I can work beside him and have influence with him, but not over him. I also have stewardship in the sisters I visit teach at church. I also have some stewardship over the students I have at school, but President Eyring is talking in this talk about our ward and families. So I am starting there.

I have noticed that since I was released from Primary this idea of unity has been more difficcult of me. I don't have stewardship over Primary anymore so the way that I can help to build unity there is to support the new primary presidency in whatever they are doing. It may not make sense to me. It may even hurt because I see such chaos on Sundays, but I am not in charge. I can help my children to get a gospel education and testimony by teaching them at home more diligently. I can have FHE that have to do with the Primary themes, we can sing the Primary program songs for our daily family devotionals and so much more. I don't have to sabotage the new Primary Presidency by saying or doing unkind things behind their backs--or in front of them.
So, President Eyring goes on in his talk to talk about the lack of unity in the world. That is so true. He says that he will talk about this subject more in the future. He says that prophets down through the ages have spoken on this topic many times. We need to be constantly reminded of it. WOW! I would think that it would be an easy thing. I mean, don't we all want to have a place where we can come and feel safe and know that our brothers and sisters in the gospel love us for who we are? Don't we want to be able to feel safe in our church meetings and other activities that we have with fellow-church members? I know I do! It's the one place that I long to have that feeling.

President Eyring encourages us to be humble. He says that "pride is the great enemy of unity. You have seen and felt it's effects." He tells a story of two people who had a mild disagreement. It got worse and worse. It was more important to be right than to just be with each other in unity. This hits home for me. I want to see unity in my LDS ward. I want to see the kind of ward fellowship that I have seen in other wards I have lived in. I believe it can happen. I just don't know how to help those around me see it, but I know that I can change myself and my family. I can help those I visit by letting them know of my love for them. I can help the Young Adults in this area feel of my love and testimony. I hope they will feel it!

President Eyring asks us to be "peacemakers." That is my goal in every action I have within my stewardship. I sit and cry through most of sacrament meeting because of the pain I feel but I can ask my Father in Heaven to help me be an instrument in his hands to be a peacemaker. I want to do as President Eyring has asked us to do and to "speak generously" of others.

I struggle so much with this. This has been my test for the years I have lived here in Kearney, Nebraska. I do better at it sometimes and other times I really fall short. I hope I can be found doing what the Lord has asked me to do!

*REALITY CHECK: This is harder than it looks. But I am trying!

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