Sometimes we get stuck seeing things our way. Would you like to see some things through another set of eyes? Maybe it will make you think and stretch or maybe just chuckle or shed a tear. Here is my world through my eyes...

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Manly Man Training #16 : Bless others

I was in church Sunday and the teacher in Priesthood was exhorting us to use our Priesthood more, specifically to give blessings more often to those in need, particularly the ladies.  He was encouraging us to honor our Priesthood and to magnify it by using it to bless others.  It is interesting that when we honor the Priesthood it means we recognize its value and do not "put it on the shelf" to ignore it or forget that we have it and disrespect it by not using it.  Then we ourselves are saying "amen to the priesthood of [this] man", even if we are worthy.  All the good it could be doing to help others and influence our own life for good is being lost.   

Let me give you a story that will help you understand.  A good friend of mine was called to a leadership calling in the ward.  He mentioned that having accepted that calling made him a better man.  I asked in what way he was referring to.  He said now that he was in a leadership position and getting calls to help others regularly at potentially any time that he treated his wife better and was kinder to her because he knew he could have some woman call and complain about her husband doing something like what he might have just done to his own wife.  So he had to be better so he was prepared to help those that needed it, whenever they needed it.  He was letting his Priesthood calling have a good influence on him by letting it influence him for good. 
When we recognize the importance of our role as Priesthood holders and the value that we are to others around us that do not have the Priesthood (or even if they do have the Priesthood, they can't give themselves a blessing) then we learn quickly that we must be better, and we want to be better so as not to diminish our opportunities and so we can be prepared when we are called upon to give blessings.  As an example I was thinking a few weeks ago that I did not have many opportunities to give people blessings very often.  This came after a period in my life where I did have many opportunities and so I was feeling like I was missing something.  Well about two weeks ago suddenly I was asked three days in a row to give blessings to different individuals.  I love to be able to do that service for people. 

The lesson in Priesthood reminded me of a time when I learned an important lesson from a situation that was a little tense but seems funny as I look back on it.  When I was young, it was my Father's and my practice to often purchase some fries from a fast food place when we were out doing things together.  Dad might be driving me to an activity or we might be doing some errand or whatever.  This particular night he stopped at a place close to home and gave me a twenty dollar bill to pay for the two fries I was to order.  I ran in and ordered and it seemed they were a bit slow.  That was notable because I knew my Dad had little patience for being slow.  But after they took my money they became really slow.  I begin to get concerned that Dad would be pretty irritated.  I noted they took the bill to the back and being young I had no idea what was going on or what to do about it.  Finally after what seemed a long time the guy came out and gave me change and explained they thought the bill was fake and that was why it took so long.  My Dad was indeed irritated despite, or perhaps because of my explanation.  As we pulled out of the parking lot he said something like, "I hope they close down!"
I didn't think any more about it until a couple weeks later my Dad and I were once again driving somewhere together and we glanced over and that place had indeed closed down.  He looked at me a little sheepish and said, "I guess you have to be careful what you say when you hold the Priesthood!"  I can laugh a lot about that now but nevertheless I learned an important lesson: I may not have the power to close restaurants on a whim, but I do need to be careful what I say because I am a Priesthood holder. 
Sometimes we don't like to have it known that we are willing to give blessings as a Priesthood holder.  If you are like that maybe this will change your mind:  we once had a family that was poor and made frequent poor decisions as well.  The kids seemed to get the brunt of a lot of things with a mother and father that got angry a lot.  Despite their reputation and actions I would be respectful and kind like I tried to be to everyone.  One day that father asked if I would give him a blessing.  I was surprised but agreed and learned one of the greatest lessons from the experience of giving him a blessing.  When I put my hands on his head and started the blessing I had a sudden influx of feelings that I understood was a small portion of the love that Heavenly Father had for that man.  It was strong and definitely had my attention.  The man was sometimes ill mannered and didn't have the greatest clothes but if Heavenly Father loved him that much then I knew it was my job to learn to love him as well. That lesson has stuck with me and helped me professionally as well.  The Lord doesn't look on the outward appearance but on the inner person.  That man and I became friends and over the years since he has moved away, he calls me from time to time to tell me what is going on in his life.  Most recently of his great pride and pleasure in seeing his son serve a full-time mission. 
So that lesson Sunday served to remind me of how important it is that we do what the Lord wants with his power, by using our Priesthood to bless others.  So give those blessings to those in need, not only to those who ask.  You need the opportunity to serve so you can grow and become what Heavenly Father wants you to become, and the people need the power of the Priesthood to be engaged and focused on their needs to help them through the trials and difficulties. 

1 comment:

  1. i never thought of it as disrespectful to not use the Priesthood! but that makes sense. it is a gift that our Father has given to men to help bless other people and should be used!!! plus it sounds from your experiences that by using it, it actually has helped to make you a better and stronger person as well! double win!!! :) i'm so glad you were so willing to use your Priesthood to bless our family so i could know how important it is to pick a wonderful man who is worthy to use his gift of the Priesthood to bless me and our future family! :)


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