Sunday, October 13, 2013

Make Your Heart a Holy Place

In the youth curriculum of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, we've been talking a lot about Holy Places. I saw this quote on Pinterest and thought it was too good not to share. [Try as I might, I have not been able to find the original source of this image. Kudos to the mysterious and obviously extremely talented designer who made this. Thank you, wherever you are.]

Despite it's complete adorableness [is that a word?], the message of the quote is definitely what spoke to me the most.

Are our hearts a holy place?

When I first thought about this, my mind turned to the importance of vitreous thoughts, righteous intentions, and charitable feelings toward others. But soon, I started thinking deeper. Much deeper. Deeper than a crater on the moon or something. And then it hit me:

Are my negative thoughts about myself keeping my heart from being a holy place?

I'm known for being a pretty happy person. I love to smile and can often be found laughing my head off at some random daily occurrence. But even though I seem happy and content on the outside, I am often very displeased with myself on the inside. In summary, I guess I'm pretty good at dishing out huge scoops of charity for others, but when it comes to me, somehow the figurative ice cream carton of compassion runs short.

"Children Of The Light"  by Anne Marie Oborn
One of the most Holy places I can imaging ever standing in is in the presence of my Savior, Jesus Christ. If the Lord were to come and speak to me, do you think he would go on and on about how my nose isn't straight and my hair is frizzy? Would he mock me because I tripped on the escalator today? [You should have seen it. The clumsy parody of a ballerina pirouette I performed in an effort to avoid a noisy fall was pretty epic.] Would Christ love me any less because I'm not popular? Since I mess up sometimes? Because I'm not perfect?

The fact is, as long as I try my best to be a righteous person and repent when I make a mistake, the Lord will accept my efforts. Measly, meager, and misfit as I might see myself, His grace is sufficient. He who knows all my fears, doubts, insecurities, and awkwardly embarrassing moments loves me. So maybe it's time I learned to love myself.

I really like this quote from President Spencer W. Kimball:

It's okay if I'm not perfect today. I'm on the right path, headed in the right direction. Yeah, I may be awkward, say dumb things on a daily basis, goof up, slip up, and mess up, but what matters in the end is what Heavenly Father thinks of me. And you know what? He love me, and He loves you too.

It's time for us to start being a little less hard on ourselves. I'm not saying we don't need to repent or that the atonement isn't necessary. It is more than necessary. In fact, it is vital. But maybe as Christ is so willing to forgive us, we could start learning to forgive ourselves.

Are you with me? Let's make our hearts a holy and uplifting place to be for everyone, including ourselves.


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