Thursday, March 15, 2012

charity save my day!

I've set a few specific goals to hopefully share the love of Christ more in my life. The first two goals involve recognizing His hand in my life: 1) I carry a little notebook with me at all times and try to record any time I feel that the Lord has touched my life that day, and 2) I try to say one prayer each day that only expresses gratitude. I've also started focusing my journal writing on recording the Lord's hand in my life that day. My other goals to apply charity in my life is to find someone to serve each day (beyond what I would normally do) and to focus my conversations by starting out with sincere questions about the other person--and then remembering what they tell me!

Yesterday, these goals were what turned a tired, sad day into an amazing one. I hadn't slept well the night before, so I was tired and grumpy, but I still tried to stick to my goals. At the beginning of my least favorite class of the week (physiology lab), I was feeling unmotivated, but as I talked to my friend Josh about his life and how his engagement is going, I felt a little better. Later, I reluctantly headed to my New Testament class, hoping the Spirit there would help. My usual spot was taken, so I sat closer to the front, right behind the girl who plays the piano for the opening song in class. Well, it turned out that she had a bad cough, and my wife had wisely packed some first aid kits in our backpacks that just happened to include cough drops! So I was able to provide service in a way that I wouldn't normally serve AND I was able to record my change in seating as a tender mercy from the Lord, who provided me with a way to share His love. The rest of the day had a spirit of humble reverence for the Lord's hand working through me to bless others, and I didn't feel grumpy for the rest of the day.

Charity is an amazing attribute of Christ, and I know He will continue to help me be happy as I seek to share His love with others.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

wake up and do something more!

I'm inspired by the accounts of President Monson's Christlike love as shared in this talk from the March 2012 Ensign. In response to learning about his care and compassion for people, I set a goal to start all of my conversations off by asking about the other person's life as much as possible, and then actually remembering things about them.

On Thursday, I was fairly successful in keeping my goal. I was happier than I have been in a long time! I even made a friend whom I wouldn't have otherwise made. There's a new guy in my research lab who, for whatever reason, rubbed me the wrong way. I guess he seemed a little cocky or overconfident. In any case, I decided to try talking to him about his life (instead of judging him based on my bad perception), and I found out that we have several things in common. We both served Spanish-speaking missions in the States; we're both on the Super Senior premed track; we're both taking the MCAT this year. I can't remember everything we talked about, but I do remember feeling like I could be friends with this guy.

What's even more amazing to me is that, until I started talking to him, the other students in the lab hadn't really engaged with him much. However, as I started talking to him, the whole lab came alive with friendly conversation, and I could tell that I wasn't the only one who had befriended this person. The love of Christ is something that spreads to all of Heavenly Father's children, and when we make an effort to share the love He has given us, He uses our efforts to bring His love further than we could have imagined.

the pure love of Christ

My New Testament class this semester has taught me things about Christ and His atonement that I never really understood before. There's so much to share that I'm not sure where to begin. I guess what it all comes down to is Moroni 7:47-48:
47 But charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him.
48 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true followers of his Son, Jesus Christ; that ye may become the sons of God; that when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope; that we may be purified even as he is pure. Amen.
My teacher pointed out that charity is not the sum of all of our efforts to be like Christ, but is instead the love from Christ, given to us, which we then share with others as we follow Him.

I have decided to shift my purpose in writing this blog from sharing thoughts and doctrines that I study to sharing experiences as I try to share the love of Christ with others in my own life. I'll post less often, but hopefully what I have to share will be more inspiring, and I will become more able to share the love that Christ has shown to me with those around me.