Tue - May 27, 2008 : 04:39 pm
Gen. Conf. - Who You Are - Burgess
Pondering on the words of Elder Burgess, I am led down a thought process a bit different than where his talk went.
I've been noticing that we as humans define ourselves quite differently, and most do it subconsciously, than we think we do.
The whole concept of "defining oneself" baffled me some years ago.
My parents and my church taught me that I was a child of God. That's who I was. I was a child of God. In me was the divine potential which would exist in any offspring of Deity. I had no problem with this at all. In fact... It gave me a sense of power, of sorts. I have always known that God is all-powerful and all-knowing. I know that God is perfect in that he commits no sin. I knew that then just as well as I know it now.
So... What has changed? Well, nothing in that respect, but I believe that the whole "defining oneself" has been hard for me because of the disparity between who I am, and who God is.
For that matter, my father, even, was - well - perfect in my adolescent mind. He never missed an appointment. He never said he was sorry, because he didn't need to. He didn't do anything that he shouldn't have, and treated my mom like she was his world.
Me, on the other hand... Well... We're all usually our own worst critics, and I'm no exception. Knowing that I was the son of one confirmed perfect being, as well as my conceived-perfect father, I had a lot to live up to... And quite frankly, as well as inevitably, I didn't.
Now, before you start commenting, "don't be so hard on yourself", and such like that, please know that I don't have a problem with self-esteem. In fact, my mom told me often that she was amazed at how I knew my divine self-worth. She was right. I did know it and still do, but how in the world am I supposed to live up to such high standards and make it? I can't! and neither can you - but that's beside the point.
My point is, as I've grown older, I've found that I have attached my weaknesses and pet-sins to my own self-description, as well as being the son of God... and that's keeping me from pushing beyond what I believe I can accomplish in this life.
I wonder to what extent we all do this - and how we overcome the self-labeling of the bad, in order to accomplish more good.
Thinking about this whole concept a bit more, and I guess any self-respecting person would have a hard time not defining him or herself by their actions, because ultimately, our actions define who we are, both inwardly and outwardly.
I guess the trick is to not consider anything bad about yourself to be a defining feature, but man.... that's tough.
Anyway... Just thought I'd spew for a moment or two, some of the thoughts rambling around in my head.