Friday, November 16, 2012

Be compassionate. Be good.

It is really funny how when I have been thinking about something it seems to find me also.

I recently was talking with a friend about some of my frustrations about doing everything to the best of my ability to be kind and generous when there isn't really anything in return. I know that true charity has no expectation, and there have been somedays when I have really had no expectation. But there have also been some days when I get the impression that I'm more of a bother than anything else. Those days are difficult to keep up the nice attitude an cheery disposition. I'm a real human being after all. I don't deserve that. I don't deserve to be used or taken for granted or just a thing to satisfy someone else's needs. Sometimes it is just tiring trying to practice true charity (true charity is when you give even when you get nothing in return).

But I saw this poster today and it just warmed my heart. It is comforting to not feel alone in valuing compassion and kindness. Heavenly Father put it up for me to see and know that He notices and He cares even if others don't.

Elder Robert C. Oaks said, "The Book of Mormon provides insight into the relationship between patience and charity. Mormon, after pointing out that if a man 'have not charity he is nothing; wherefore he must needs have charity,' goes on to name the 13 elements of charity, or the pure love of Christ. I find it most interesting that 4 of the 13 elements of this must-have virtue relate to patience (see Moroni 7:44-45).
"First, 'charity suffereth long.' That is what patience is all about. Charity 'is not easily provoked' is another aspect of this quality, as is charity 'beareth all things.' And finally, charity 'endureth all things' is certainly an expression of patience (Moroni 7:45). From these defining elements it is evident that without patience gracing our soul, we would be seriously lacking with respect to a Christlike character."

I recently read Mosiah chapter 4 and I think I have a new favorite chapter in the Book of Mormon. I've been praying and studying about the love of God and how to have it more abundantly. King Benjamin really wanted it for his people and he talked about it to them

Elder John Groberg once said, "The more we obey God, the more we desire to help others. The more we help others, the more we love God and on and on. Conversely, the more we disobey God and the more selfish we are, the less love we feel.
"Trying to find lasting love without obeying God is like trying to quench thirst by drinking from an empty cup--you can go through the motions, but the thirst remains. Similarly, trying to find love without helping and sacrificing for others is like trying to live without eating--it is against the laws of nature and cannot succeed. We cannot fake love. It must become part of us. The prophet Mormon explained:
" '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.
" 'Wherefore, my beloved brethren, pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love' (Moro. 7:47-48)."

1 comment:

  1. Maybe giving love without expectation of anything in return is so hard is because, unlike Christ, we are still trying to fill the hole in our heart created when we were separated from God. If we give love hoping to have it returned, then it's not really charity. I think real charity, selfless love, is a natural outpouring of having enough love within yourself that your cup is full so you don't need or even desire anything in return. It's just love flowing from God to you, and from you to the universe around you. Ideally. We're all still practicing that though.