Tuesday, April 10, 2012

3rd Annual LDS Writers Blogfest

Today is the 3rd Annual LDS Writers Blogfest! It's really cool for me simply because I've participated from the beginning. I guess three years isn't all that, but image how cool it will be at ten or twenty years?

Anyway, this year was left wide open for me to write about whatever I wanted. I don't do well without rules to break tweak.

As I've pondered what to talk about today, this one talk from our General Conference kept coming to mind. Granted it has been in everyone's conversation the last week, but there is a different part of the talk I want to highlight.

I'm talking about Dieter F Uchtdorf's "Stop It" sermon. The actual talk is titled "The Merciful Obtain Mercy" and you can read the full talk HERE.

Even with all my sins, the one thing I've been fairly good at is loving others. I'm a people person so that isn't hard. One of the things I have a hard time understanding is how people can be so vicious to one another. None of us are perfect, so why do we beat each other up about it? This is what Elder Uchtdorf had to say about it.

This topic of judging others could actually be taught in a two-word sermon. When it comes to hating, gossiping, ignoring, ridiculing, holding grudges, or wanting to cause harm, please apply the following:

Stop it!

It’s that simple. We simply have to stop judging others and replace judgmental thoughts and feelings with a heart full of love for God and His children. God is our Father. We are His children. We are all brothers and sisters. I don’t know exactly how to articulate this point of not judging others with sufficient eloquence, passion, and persuasion to make it stick. I can quote scripture, I can try to expound doctrine, and I will even quote a bumper sticker I recently saw. It was attached to the back of a car whose driver appeared to be a little rough around the edges, but the words on the sticker taught an insightful lesson. It read, Don’t judge me because I sin differently than you.
That bumper sticker can be tweaked to fit any situation:

Don't judge me because I dress differently than you.
Don't judge me because I look differently than you.
Don't judge me because I speak differently than you.
Don't judge me because I vote differently than you.
Don't judge me because I write differently than you.
Don't judge me because I believe differently than you.

One day I hope we can find it within ourselves to realize that we are all children of our Heavenly Father. He loves each and every one of us and we should do the same.
Jesus said it is easy to love those who love us; even the wicked can do that. But Jesus Christ taught a higher law. His words echo through the centuries and are meant for us today. They are meant for all who desire to be His disciples. They are meant for you and me: “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”
And I submit, Love those who are different than you. Diversity is a good thing. Without it this world would be boring.
Check out the other participants:

Amanda Sowards
Angie Lofthouse
Ben Spendlove
Brittany Larsen
Cami Checketts
Charity Bradford
Danyelle Ferguson
Giselle Abreu
Julia Keanini
Julie Coulter Bellon
Kasey Tross
Kayeleen Hamblin
Kelly Bryson
Krista Van Dolzer
Laura Johnston
Melanie Stanford
Rachelle Christensen
Rebecca Belliston
Sierra Gardner
Stephanie Worlton