Thursday, February 26, 2009

Creating Joy

by Kari Diane Pike

There is a video clip from President Dieter F. Uchtdorf's November 2008 conference address titled, "Happiness, Your Heritage" posted on You Tube and e-magazines, and being passed around the world through e-mail.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RhLlnq5yY7k&feature=channel_page

I love the words Pres. Uchtdorf spoke: "Everyone can create." Then he asks, "But to what end were we created? We were created with the express purpose and potential of experiencing a fullness of joy. Our birthright--and the purpose of our great voyage on this earth--is to seek and experience eternal happiness. One of the ways we find this is by creating things...Creation means bringing into existence something that did not exist before--colorful gardens, harmonious homes, family memories, flowing laughter."

For many people today, creating joy seems an impossible task. They ask, "How can anyone feel joy when there is so much turmoil around us?" Pres. Uchtdorf says, "Start small. Try to see how many smiles you can create, write a letter of appreciation, learn a new skill, identify a space and beautify it...continually seek to adorn your minds with all the graces of the Spirit of Christ. The more you trust and rely upon the Spirit, the greater your capacity to create. That is your opportunity in this life and in the life to come. Sisters, trust and rely on the Spirit."

A Viewpoint article in the November 15, 2008 Church News states: "Latter-day Saints are taught to approach God regularly through prayer, better understanding and knowing Him and His will. As we do that, we draw close to Him and align our desires and efforts close to His design. As we do, we are able to secure--in large part by prayer--blessings for ourselves and others that God is willing to grant, but which are dependent on our asking in faith." The article then directs us to the Bible Dictionary, pages 752-3, where we read, "Blessings require some work or effort on our part before we can obtain them. Prayer is a form of work, and is an appointed means for obtaining the highest of all blessings."

A couple of days ago, Valerie Ipson suggested using the scriptures to help us unblock our creativity. I appreciated that gentle reminder. Daily prayer, coupled with reading and scripture study invites the Spirit, resulting in a marvelous enlightening of our minds. Furthermore, I have found that as I record those thoughts, my mind is further enlightened and keen, new insights follow. But once you are given this new understanding, what do you do with it? How can learning truths help you create joy?

Pres. Robert D. Hales, in the 2008 November General Conference taught: "True disciples see opportunity in the midst of opposition...We can take advantage of such opportunities in many ways: a kind letter to the editor, a conversation with a friend, a comment on a blog, or a reassuring word to one who has made a disparaging comment. We can answer with love those who have been influenced by misinformation and prejudice--'who are kept from the truth because they know not where to find it.' (D&C 123:12)" Pres. Hales goes on to say, "As true disciples seek guidance from the Spirit, they receive inspiration tailored to each encounter. And in every encounter, true disciples respond in ways that invite the Spirit of the Lord....I testify that with the mantle of His peace upon us, the First Presidency's promise will be fulfilled: 'the opposition which may seem hard to bear will be a blessing to the kingdom of God upon the earth.'"

As writers, we can flood the world with gentle words of encouragement and truth, remembering that "the more [we] rely upon the Spirit, the greater [our] capacity to create...this is [our' opportunity in this life and [our] destiny in the life to come." Aided by fervent prayer and daily scripture study, we can create joy where there seems to be none, and share that joy with all the people around us.

5 comments:

  1. I love what they are doing with those Mormon Messages, putting the words of apostles to music and adding picures. I like this one so much I added it to my Vinyl lettering blog (vinylsignsanddesigns.blogspot.com)

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  2. Thank you for writing this. Sometimes I don't put as much effort into my scripture study, but I will be rewarded for taking the time to read and ponder. I am determined to receive these blessings, and then help others feel the joy!

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  3. This year I decided to study topically instead of just reading through the Doctrine & Covenants. I feel like a veil has been lifted. I never realized how much more there was to the scriptures and the modern technology that lets me do it so easily.

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  4. Thanks Kari, you used some of my favorite messages to lift my spirits. I am going to print your blog and hang it in my closet. Let me explain why the closet. It is a walk-in with all my dressing items, and I mean ALL. I hang thoughts, special cards and pictures from my children, things that touch my soul. I read them as I dress. It is one way I have of giving myself a bit of a spark of hope and reminders of what life is really about each day. Do you mind if I do this with your blog?

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  5. Cindy, you are so sweet. I'm thrilled that you're spirits were lifted...you may use it as you wish...after all, the words don't really belong to me. I felt the Spirit so strongly as I studied. I love being able to pass that light around! Today we had a STake RS enrichment meeting. I was filled to overflowing with new insights and hope! Love it!

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