Saturday, December 13, 2008

Murmur Not

I am teaching Relief Society in January and have been thinking on and off of topics to teach. I came across this talk, Murmur Not, by Neal A. Maxwell (Ensign, Nov. 1989, 82). This is a very pointed and direct talk, not one of the feel good kind of talks. But where I am, it is needed. What I really wish I could do is just make some copies and paste it on a door or two or three - maybe all our doors need this talk - just in case.

Note to self: Remember (I forget at times) that we each have our own custom path to walk in this life with perfectly planned experiences and trials to tutor us and while I can't understand what makes some people do the things they do, there IS a plan.

The answer to dealing with all kinds of people is this - love them and pray for them when there is nothing else you can do.
Here it that answer in the scriptures: Mormon 3:12 "...and had loved them, according to the love of God which was in me, with all my heart; and my soul had been poured out in prayer unto my God all the day long for them; nevertheless, it was without faith, because of the hardness of their hearts."

Not always so easy. I need an increase in my own faith.

Back to the talk.
Here are some of my favorite quotes from Elder Maxwell's talk:

"...too many of us seem to expect that life will flow ever smoothly, featuring an unbroken chain of green lights with empty parking places just in front of our destinations!"

"Cutting truth does hurt, but its lancing can drain off pride."

Characteristics of a murmurer:

-"The murmurer often lacks the courage to express openly his concerns."

-"While a murmurer insists on venting his own feelings, he regards any response thereto as hostile."

-"Murmurers have short memories. Israel arrived in Sinai, then journeyed on to the Holy Land though they were sometimes hungry and thirsty. But the Lord rescued them, whether by the miraculous appearance by quail or by water struck from a rock. (See Num. 11:31; Ex. 17:6.) Strange, isn’t it, brothers and sisters, how those with the shortest memories have the longest lists of demands! However, with no remembrance of past blessings, there is no perspective about what is really going on.

-Murmurers spend all their time in looking for the evil."Perspective makes such an enormous and constant difference in our lives."

"The goodness of the Lord is attested to in so many ways - mansions await! - yet we ungrateful guests still complain about the present accommodations."Murmuring is contagious, but "being of good cheer is equally contagious."

"Letting off steam always produces more heat than light."

"Murmuring can be another form of mocking God's plan of salvation."

"Murmuring can also be noise enough that it drowns out the various spiritual signals to us... Murmuring over the weight of our crosses not only takes energy otherwise needed to carry them but might cause another to put down his cross altogether."

God accomplishes things, brothers and sisters, “in process of time.” This calls for our patience. Moreover, doing things in process of time is often His way of either preserving our agency or of providing us with needed opportunity. In fact, certain experiences, over which we might understandably murmur, can actually be for our good. (See D&C 105:10; D&C 122:7; Gen. 30:27.) Thus you and I may think God is merely marking time, when He is actually marking openings for us, openings which are sorely needed. Even then, we are so slow to use those openings in order to escape from the familiar cell of selfishness.

"Nonmurmurers are permitted to see so much more."

"Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them." - 2 Kings 6:16

"If our lips are closed to murmuring, then our eyes can be opened."

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