|Forget Me Not - Cortney Lunt|
Last night was a birthday party for the Relief Society (a church organization for women) and in honor of such, artist Cortney Lunt came with some of her paintings. They are all absolutely amazing. But one in particular she painted after listening to a talk given by Pres. Dieter Uchtdorf called Forget Me Not. If you are not familiar with this talk, I highly suggest you listen to it. The talk is here. This is going to be a long post, but I really wanted to share some of my favorite sections of the talk.
A german legend tells of how the tiny blue flower got its name. As God was naming the plants, there was one tiny flower that was left un-named. A tiny voice called out "Forget me not, oh Lord!" And God pronounced that this was to be it's name. President Uchtdorf uses this tiny little flower as a metaphor in his talk. He states that the five petals of the flower can remind us of five things that would be best not to forget.
Forget not to be patient with yourself. We spend so much time reflecting on our imperfections and sometimes have a hard time realizing our strengths. We are not perfect. We will never be perfect in this life. And God does expect complete perfection right now, so why are we spending so much time dwelling on that? I love how he says "Our journey towards perfection is long, but we can find wonder and delight in even the tiniest steps in that journey." I have such a hard time remembering that. I all too often punish myself for the things I do wrong instead of celebrating my successes. Of course one should always strive to better themselves, but there is no harm in being proud of all the accomplishments along the way.
Forget not the difference between a good sacrifice and a foolish sacrifice. This was all too real to me as the night before I had sacrificed my sleep to stay up and watch the entire six episodes of The Walking Dead on Netflix. Needless to say, I went to sleep late and paid for it the next day (which was also the cause of me falling asleep at 9:00 pm writing a blog post....). Was it really soo important to watch a silly show instead of letting my body rest? Life is busy and full of sacrfices. We need to think to ourselves "Am I commiting my time and energy to the things that matter most?"
Forget not to be happy now. I have a really hard time with this. I think I focus soo much on my desires (to buy a house, get married to a great and wonderful man, earn enough money to have a comfortable living style instead of paycheck to paycheck....etc etc) that I miss out on all the little things that really make me happy. I love when he says:
"Never stop striving for the best that is within you. Never stop hoping for all of the righteous desires of your heart. But don’t close your eyes and hearts to the simple and elegant beauties of each day’s ordinary moments that make up a rich, well-lived life."
Forget not the WHY of the gospel. I am still working on my why....and this is why I will leave this section up to him to explain.
"My dear sisters, the gospel of Jesus Christ is not an obligation; it is a pathway, marked by our loving Father in Heaven, leading to happiness and peace in this life and glory and inexpressible fulfillment in the life to come. The gospel is a light that penetrates mortality and illuminates the way before us. When we understand why our Heavenly Father has given us this pattern for living, when we remember why we committed to making it a foundational part of our lives, the gospel ceases to become a burden and, instead, becomes a joy and a delight. It becomes precious and sweet."
Forget not that the Lord loves you. There are many times I have really struggled with this concept. My attitude was such that I figured if I wasn't living "the perfect life", then I wasn't worth listening to when I prayed. I wasn't worthy of trying to read the scriptures or going to church because I felt like a hypocrite. Pres. Utchdorf reminds us of a very important fact and states probably the most significant thing (to me) in the entire talk.
"Sisters, wherever you are, whatever your circumstances may be, you are not forgotten. No matter how dark your days may seem, no matter how insignificant you may feel, no matter how overshadowed you think you may be, your Heavenly Father has not forgotten you. In fact, He loves you with an infinite love."
I don't think I could leave this post on a better note. I generally don't go all churchy in these posts, but this was such a good reminder of how I personally want to grow (and not just in the churchy side, but in all aspects) that I felt I needed to share. So hopefully you'll read with an open heart and mind, and take something away from it that can help improve your own life.