My mind and heart have been heavy this weekend. I haven't been able to sleep (that could be because of being pregnant), but I have had so many thoughts. Most of my thoughts come from three recent sources. 1) two funerals I have attended in the last two weeks 2) LDS General Conference and 3) Two recent Sunday school lessons in the New Testament Gospel Doctrine Manual.
The funerals that I attended reminded me that the worth of souls is great in the sight of God. Which also relates to Lesson 30, "God is no respecter of persons." The two men whose funerals I was at were very different. One was very well know to the world and the other known by few, BUT I KNEW Heavenly Father thought of them as equals. I KNOW that Heavenly Father values my worth regardless of my earthly accomplishments. I know he wants the happiness of all of his children, not just the President, an accomplished scholar, or athlete. The worth of souls is very great in his sight. Every speaker during conference affirmed that to me and that our potential is unlimited.
The other thought I have been thinking about is the power of words. I heard this quote in Lesson 32 today, Elder Marvin J. Ashton taught: “When others disagree with our stand we should not argue, retaliate in kind, or contend with them. … Ours is to explain our position through reason, friendly persuasion, and accurate facts. Ours is to stand firm and unyielding on the moral issues of the day and the eternal principles of the gospel, but to contend with no man or organization. Contention builds walls and puts up barriers. Love opens doors. … Contention never was and never will be an ally of progress” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1978, 10; or Ensign, May 1978, 7–8). I loved this quote! Shouldn't the Spirit guides us in all we say so we don't offend??? Isn't the saying "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all..." still followed today. Gossip, drama and backbiting have seemed prevalent to me lately. Where has respect, kindness, compliments, etc... gone? While I may not be an amazing writer, storyteller, or the best at grammar, I still believe words have a profound effect on everyone. Our prophet, Thomas S. Monson, said this in conference:
"Let us speak to others with love and respect, ever keeping our language clean and avoiding words or comments that would wound or offend. May we follow the example of the Savior, who spoke with tolerance and kindness throughout His ministry.”
To repeat, "Contention builds walls and puts up barriers. Love opens doors. … Contention never was and never will be an ally of progress."