The topic of this post just seems to keep coming up in my life.
We had this lesson about women at church on Sunday — subtitle: “Righteous women who fulfill the tremendous responsibilities given to them by God are a great blessing to their families, to the Church, and to the world.”
Doesn’t that sound wonderful? I thought it did. But, the discussion gave rise to a negative comment from one individual that just about ruined the whole darn thing. I won’t detail what she said here, but for me, the lesson and the spirit that it brought were completely derailed, and I’d be willing to bet I wasn’t the only one who felt that way.
Then I read this post this morning, describing a somewhat similar experience (same lesson). The writer is sharing what she learned yesterday about teaching, but as I read her description of the class discussion, I felt that her classmates were overly hard on her. It seemed that everyone who felt something she and/or the lesson said didn’t describe their personal situation, thought they needed to complain about it.
I don’t want to suggest that people shouldn’t share their feelings, or that people don’t have the right to complain once in awhile. But, could we just try to be a little more positive? And if something doesn’t seem to apply to our lives at the moment, does that mean that it’s wrong, or could we just sit back quietly and think, “Well, I’m sure this is inspiring to someone today.” I’m not talking about accepting incorrect doctrine, or insensitivity. I’m talking about realizing that what is true and correct might be hard for us to take sometimes, but we ought to temper our complaints.
Someone’s comment on the above-mentioned post included this quote from President Hinckley, which inspired me, and quieted a lot of my ongoing frustration about this topic, so I thought I’d share:
“I feel to invite women everywhere to rise to the great potential within you. I do not ask that you reach beyond your capacity. I hope you will not nag yourselves with thoughts of failure. I hope you will not try to set goals far beyond your capacity to achieve. I hope you will simply do what you can do in the best way you know. If you do so, you will witness miracles come to pass.”
We are not being asked to fit some stereotype of housewifery and motherhood, or reach an unrealistic model of perfection. We are being asked to do our best. I for one have days that I don’t do my best, and I don’t mind being told by someone I believe is a prophet of God that I should keep trying.
Sorry if I seem like a broken record on this subject. It just keeps coming up, and for some reason, I needed to express myself again.