Well I haven’t written for a long time, and I’m starting to miss it! I’m back at school since the beginning of the week, which means assignments, readings, and most of all a lot of work to do for my PhD candidacy! It’s becoming difficult to juggle all my responsibilities in a balanced manner, and I’ve let some important slip down in my list of priorities, including my calling, house work, journal writing and contacting my family. It’s time to get back on track!
Tomorrow I am teaching the high priest group in our ward, the lesson is based on President Dieter F. Uchtdorf‘s talk “Waiting on the road to Damascus“. He made some very pertinent comments, some of which I highlighted.
I want to ask myself whether or not I am waiting on the road to Damascus, in some fashion. I think that sometimes I am, but I find it difficult to explain how. I rarely feel that I’m doing enough in my various roles and responsibilities, and I’m very often reminded of my capacities and opportunities. I sometimes get an inspiring vision of the earth-shattering improvements I could effect in people’s lives, of positive changes I could put into place in organisations and systems. However, I’m usually frustrated either by the realisation that my aspirations are far too lofty, or by the loss of enthusiasm that naturally accompanies the passage of time.
Nevertheless, I continue to hold a deep belief in every human’s potential to perform miracles. With time, I am starting to see that, although miracles are impressive and awe-inspiring, they take time to perform. I think that if I can guide and shape Joshua in a way that will protect him against harmful ideologies and behaviours in his future life, give him a solid foundation of core values, and provide him with healthy psychological, emotional and social development, that will constitute a miracle, though one that has taken millions of small acts of sacrifice and conscious effort. The way I see him develop already gives me nigh daily reminders that I am at least doing some things right!
Another way in which we can figuratively wait on the road to Damascus is by delaying important decisions until we are sure that our choice is the right or best one. It always amazes me how uncomfortable humans are when faced with uncertainty! We want answers to everything, and can be more satisfied with an obviously wrong answer than with no answer at all! Sometimes we can only see one possible choice, and we conclude that it must be the one to take, since no other is available, even though we feel right down in our bones that the choice is wrong. We are impatient, we can’t tolerate not knowing NOW what we should do. Just like little children, we stomp our feet in rage and demand an answer right now.
However, one of the purposes of mortal existence is precisely to learn to deal with uncertainty, and to make some choices based on feelings and inspiration rather than on solid facts. That’s sometimes called faith, and it’s never easy, but sustained, meaningful and positive personal growth is impossible without it.