Sunday, December 11, 2011

Finding Me By Losing Me

If the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others, as Gandhi once said, then what are we waiting for?

Getting lost is frightful, and finding your way back to safety and comfort can be difficult, but when you meets you for reals, the reunion is sweeter than a honey bee on Valentines Day (I totally made that up and it probably doesn't make sense)

Elder Jose Alonzo seems to agree with Gandhi. In his talk this past October, he told a story about his son getting lost. I'll leave it to Elder Alonzo to fill in the details.

"I recall an occasion when we went as a family to downtown Mexico City to buy clothing for our two children. They were very young. Our older sonwas just barely two years old, and the younger son was a year old. Thestreet was crowded with people. While we were shopping, leading our children by the hand, we stopped for a moment to look at something, andwithout realizing it, we lost our older son! We did not know how, but hewas not with us. Without a moment’s delay, we took off running to lookfor him. We searched and called out for him, feeling great anguish,thinking that we might lose him forever. In our minds we were pleading for Heavenly Father to help us find him.  After a little while we found him. There he was, innocently looking at toys through a store window. We hugged and kissed him, and we made the commitment to watch over our children diligently so that we would never lose one again. We learned that in order to go to our son’s rescue, we did not need planning meetings. We simply acted, going out in search of theone who had been lost. We also learned that our son never even realized that he was lost."

Elder Alonzo also said, "His [Christ] was a life of service. When we serve our neighbor, we help those who are in need. In the process we may find solutions to our own difficulties." He then suggested the following to find those solutions quickly, "Each day we have the opportunity to give help and service—doing the right thing at the right time, without delay."

In other words, if the dissolution of difficulties is what's needed, then the delay of service will yield no solutions.

If losing myself in service to others helps me find me, then the hesitation and delay to reach out and help others blinds my spiritual senses to what is real and who I really am.

Making sense of all this, Elder Alonzo then articulated this declaration:

"As we emulate the Savior, we show our love to our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, and we become more like Them."

If Scripture Mastery Genesis 1:26-27 is correct and I really was made in the image of' God, then maybe that's who I am. I am like them, and emulating them at the right time, without delay, will help me see that.

Service to others does more for the giver than the receiver. This Christmas season, let us find the Savior in each of us as we reach out to those who need us the most. And if you are one of those who needs an outreached hand, perhaps in extending yours you will find that being lost isn't so lonely after all. In lengthening our efforts to serve, we find One who is already searching for us. Finding ourselves is finding Him, and in finding Him, you lose the you that searched for happiness everywhere except inside, exactly where you were all the time.

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