Last week I posted about our need to love the people God has given us to love. Sounds great in theory, but how does that translate into the real world?
We all have busy lives. Many of us, single and married, are struggling to keep pace with modern living. Technology supposed to simplify our lives easily complicates them. Having access to more and more information can lead to serious indecisiveness and burnout.
So if we’re not loving the people that God has given us to love, it’s really easy to think, Gee, that’s one more thing for my already overloaded plate! How ever will I fit that in?
Read on for the answer (or at least my answer) ....
It's not that hard
It’s actually easier than you think. You don’t climb a mountain in one fell swoop (unless you’re Superman ... but I’m guessing you’re not him). You climb a mountain one step at a time. By taking just a single step, you move in the direction of conquering the mountain.
Likewise, when it comes to loving the people God has given you to love, you don’t need to do everything, just something. By doing just one thing more than you’re doing already, you move in the direction of your heavenly home.
Thinking about everything you need to do to climb your mountain can easily overwhelm. That’s the experience I had when I started taking notes during General Conference; I was so overwhelmed that I froze and did nothing. That’s why you should focus on just one thing — the one thing you need to do to move in the right direction.
That one thing doesn’t need to be huge. It doesn’t need to take tons of time or even require you to adopt a new role. Often times a simple smile or a warm compliment can brighten someone’s day. Being alert to those around you and quick both to identify needs and offer assistance for seemingly small matters can make a world of difference
In a previous post, I suggested inviting singles to sit with your family as one of the top four things that marrieds can do for singles. Seriously, what does it mean to look around when you enter the chapel and invite someone sitting alone to sit with your family? Less than half a minute for you and the world to many singles who feel like they don’t belong.
But you don’t need to be married to ride this train. That’s the best part! Singles can extend the same invitations I previously encouraged from our married friends. Singles can smile and complement. Singles can be alert to others around them and offer assistance. Doing just one more thing to love the people God gave us to love is no one’s special province. No one has a monopoly on love.
Joy comes faster when you partner
Perhaps the fastest and most effective way to learn what one thing you should do to love those God has given you to love is to partner with the Lord. I think Isaiah said it best when he wrote
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.
Isn’t that awesome? By partnering with the Lord, the word of counsel and guidance you receive from Him will “go forth” and “not return ...void, but it shall accomplish that which [God] please[s].” And check out that last verse. That totally shouts from the rooftops of the world the joy to be had in our mortal journey.
If you don’t feel the truth of that deep inside yourself — if you don’t feel the access to joy that God has for you right now — then please start taking the Lord at His word.
The best way to start doing start taking the Lord at His word is to follow Elder Lawrence admonition during the October 2015 General Conference to “ask the Lord for directions.” If you approach Him humbly and sincerely, He will indicate your next step towards your heavenly home. This is what partnering with the Lord is all about.
Adopting a personal ministry walks hand in hand with partnering with the Lord. I’ve posted before about the great joy singles can bring to their lives by adopting a personal ministry. You need to do no more than just one thing to start, because doing just one thing starts you moving in the right direction.
In fact, every good thing in life starts with just one thing. And the Spirit can help us to understand what one thing we each need to do to love best those whom God has given us to love. So don’t delay. Begin today. Partner with the Lord and ask what one thing you should do to love better those whom He has given you to love.
Howdy! I'm Lance, host of Joy in the Journey Radio. I've been blogging about LDS singles life since 2012, and now I produce a weekly radio show to help LDS singles have more joy in their journey and bring all Latter-day Saints together. Let's engage a conversation that will increase the faith of LDS singles and bring singles and marrieds together in a true unity of the faith.
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