Monday, October 6, 2008

You're Not the Boss of Me

If you ever need to boss me, take note: Your bossiness should be masked in such a way that leads me to believe I am making the decision myself. Does that sound as childish as I think it does? I thought so. I know, I know, it is a pride issue. I will add it to my never ending list of things upon which to improve.

Twice a year, leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gather together and address millions of people, all across the world, who make up our church membership; although, you do not have to be a "member" of our church to take part in what is being shared. Many radio, cable, and satellite channels carry coverage of these meetings.

Church leaders share powerful testimonies of our Savior, Jesus Christ and our Father in Heaven. I know, without doubt, the men and women who speak during these meetings are instruments of our Father in Heaven. They share words of wisdom. Their words heal, uplift, and guide during times of trial as well as times of joy.

I love General Conference weekends. There are many reasons why, not the least of which is that I receive inspired messages of hope, peace, love, and direction without ever feeling as though I am being bossed. I often feel these men and women are speaking to me just as my Savior would. Make no mistake, they are direct in their counsel. There is no wondering where they stand; however, it is all in the delivery...gentle with their reminders, loving guidance, and even a bit of humor every now and then. I like it. It works for me.

There is no question as to why these men and women have been chosen to serve in their positions of leadership. As they extend challenges for our betterment that are based on neither personal opinions nor agendas, these leaders embody the words "many are called, but few are chosen". They teach true and correct principles, then kindly ask us to righteously exercise our free agency. They counsel us to behave in ways that will benefit not only ourselves, but far more importantly our families and the world in which we live. True disciples of Christ...always leading, never pushing or bossing.

I was especially touched by a message given by our prophet, President Thomas S. Monson. He spoke beautifully on finding joy in the journey of this life. For someone like me, who does not like to be bossed and wants to make all of her own decisions, you would think I don't need anyone's "permission" for anything. But, I could have jumped for joy as I heard this spiritual giant tell me it is okay to sometimes just live in the moment, that we should not overlook today because we are so busy looking toward tomorrow.

He said, "Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved." Ahhhh, words I have longed to hear. From a pulpit, the message was clear: No matter what I am doing, no matter what bill needs to be paid, or bathroom needs to be scrubbed, I can stop and paint Chloe's nails, play Army guys with Cole, or have Cade teach me to paint. No matter what load of laundry is waiting, I can stop and watch a movie with Jared. I have heard messages on this topic before, but never with such power. This time, the difference for me was the overwhelming feeling of "I can" rather than one more "I should". "I can" actually have fun before "I should" check one more thing off my to do list! Find the joy in the journey. You will miss these moments later.

I felt relief as he spoke. I felt free. I knew that this man, although he does not know me personally, trusts me. And in that moment, I knew my Heavenly Father and Savior trust me as well. They trust me with my time, with my today and my tomorrows, they trust me with my entire journey. I certainly never needed "permission" to find joy in the journey, that would be contrary to what the gospel of Jesus Christ is all about. But, it felt amazing to hear his words of wisdom. Thank you President Monson for sharing your message in a way that makes this stubborn mule, not-to-be bossed snarky belle, believe she is making all the decisions herself.


RitterB's said...

Wait... I thought that message was for me. I loved conference this weekend. I know I can always come away with a new look on life.

mom said...

Amen.....Amen....and Amen! I have to apologize to you b/c even though you did not call me out, I so know where you got your overwhelming guilt trip ticket when you stop "doing" and attempt to "relax" or "enjoy" anything.
Sorry....but isn't that why it is so great to hear President Monson tell you to ignore those voices in your head and listen to the feelings in your heart!

And with that said, ummmmmmmm, actually, you know in your heart I am still the "boss of you." :)j.k.

Rachel Taylor said...

Isn't it a wonderful feeling when these wonderful men who are speaking to millions feel like they are right there in your living room, with u in your pj's, talking to you about u and your life? I love it!

KC Kanenwishers said...

I so loved conference and felt like it was for me. I'm grateful for the lessons I've learned and for your reminder. I'm glad to know that I can return to your post and learn again.

Kim said...

What a great way to summarize my most favorite conference talk EVER. Such simple counsel, it was very liberating to hear those words from the prophet. Keep up the posts, I look forward to your words!

colleen said...

Oh Natalie- I know you must have been thinking of the two of us! Thanks I have to practivce this more often!!

Kathy said...


What fabulous insights you have. I love being able to hear conference in my own home. It reminds me that my home is to be a place of strength and protection from the world. I felt like many of the talks were meant just for me. It always amazes me how right on they are and how they are so in sinc. with each other. It just reaffirms to me that they are called and lead by God.