Today is more of a quick thought than a developed post, but I feel the need to share my experience with "seek[ing] not [my] own" yesterday. I've been praying each morning before I start studying these things I've been sharing with you that I can find someone to serve, but I often get to the end of the day and can't think of anyone I've really done anything significant for. Of course, I get to serve my wife almost every day, so I guess that counts, but I was hoping I could do more than that.
Well, as I thought about not being able to serve people this morning, I realized that sometimes our service comes in little things that we take for granted. Yesterday, for example, I went home teaching to two people in my ward. I haven't been able to connect with my new companion yet, so I went my myself. Our most recent copy of the Ensign got thrown away in our cleaning spree last Saturday, so I wasn't able to bring that with me and felt very unprepared for my lessons. However, as I went to visit these two individuals, I found that they needed a listening ear and a helping heart more than a lesson. They're both faithful members trying their best to follow Christ, and they each read the Ensign every month, so they'll get the lesson one way or another. But when Steve started talking about his disappointment with not being accepted to his MBA program and having to re-take the GMAT, I felt like the best thing I could do was to let him get out his frustrations and offer my support and empathy. And when Sister Gabbs talked about how her dog gets lonely sometimes, I could tell that my time with her was just as precious to her as it has become to me. I felt real love for these people and urged them to call me over whenever they needed help, no matter how busy my life might seem.
Like King Benjamin said, in sharing this experience "I do not desire to boast, for I have only been in the service of God" (Mosiah 2:16). In fact, I feel deeply and profoundly humbled that the Lord has answered my prayers and helped me learn charity without my even noticing! So when you feel like you're not doing enough to serve and love others, take some time to reflect on the little things you do each day, and you'll find that you are serving in ways you don't even know. And there will even be times when the service you provide doesn't even seem like service to you, but it completely changes the outcome of someone's day for the better. That, I think, is the miracle of Christ and one of the many "tender mercies of the Lord" (1 Nephi 1:20).