I don't know how to spell AdderolIn case anyone wanted to know, the title to my email is something that
was said during a lesson we had with some less actives. They were
talking about mothers in Utah who were taking anti-depressants so much
because their family isn't perfect enough. It reminds me of a phrase
that I coined while in my last area- the "suburban crisis." In the
suburbs, the things you fret over are very real, but are hardly
detrimental at all. They include getting a new lawnmower because your
front wheel is broken, getting the right frame for the giant family
photo, or not buying a gallon of Blue Bell for the week because you
decided to diet. In my last area these were all concerns I heard over
the dinner table, discussed with real concern. They have traveled over
to this area, and I feel like it relates to now some people feel about
their own discipleship. These spiritual suburban crises happen all too
often with members. The mom is praying urgently for God to give her
son strength to not get a C in Physics. A dad frustratingly wonders
why they haven't been having family home evenings lately. Two siblings
get in a fight because one hasn't been to the temple in a few months.
Do these really happen? are these real concerns? The answer to these
are yes. To the people in these situations, these concerns are very,
very real. There are people whose paths of discipleship run a narrow,
shipshape course. They are advanced in their knowledge, full of wise
council and discernment. Their acts of sin are heinous, defeating,
saddening. Is there any way, that even the greatest of the great
members of the church can still be righteous. Is there anything
The bishop addressed us on the fifth Sunday of the week. He talked
about failure. It seems to be that people in the LDS church, more so
than those out of it, have a tremendous fear of failure. Perhaps that
is why BYU is one of the most stressed out colleges in the nation. It
isn't the school or the curriculum, it's the students. They put the
weight on themselves. Which don't get me wrong, it is impressive to
see such a powerful, self motivated group of people. God loves a
humble, industrious people. But the feeling of self worth lacks with
some saints in the church.
Like A man in our Ward. He is an amazing man. He is going to medical
school at UT, has a beautiful wife and two kids, afforded a trip to
see his mission president father in Australia. This guy is a champ! He
sat us down and made us do a companionship study for a lesson he was
going out with us to. However, he pleaded his own insufficiency in an
elders quorum lesson, and talked about how sometimes he feels separate
from God's will at times.
Are you kidding me? There is a about 6.9 billion people who don't have
the same spiritual depth and knowledge as this man. So few people are
in such a position of confidence and success as this man, and yet he
still feels the pangs of failure. Heck, it is even the fear of
failure, I can't even tell how he failed yet.
This spiritual suburban crises comes from a great understanding of
God, and a great understanding of the natural man. We are carnal,
sensual, devilish, even as the dust of the earth. Full of hate and
envy and all these awful things. God is great. He is charitable, full
of love, mercy, patience, knowledge. In fact, he is perfect in his
ways. The stronger you come to know the nature of the godhead compared
to the shortcomings of the natural man, the greater the distance
between the two subjects. There's this gap that becomes a canyon, then
a trench, then an abyss. How can we ever conquer this? As hard as we
try to choose the right, something goes wrong.
Let us never forget the atonement. Let us never forget that Christ is
our lord and savior first, not an advisor or a failsafe. He comes
first and foremost in all things. He is the perfect leader,
knowledgable of all things we do. He knows we suck at a lot of things.
He also knows that we are trying our best, and the best is enough.
Calm down. God knows you, he loves you. It reminds me of a pillow my
bishop at home has in his office. "I know everything about you, and
we're still friends!" Don't worry. Do your best at discipleship. Do
your best at life. When your best isn't enough, breathe, figure out
what needs to change, and do it. If it still isn't enough, the. You're
looking at the situation the wrong way. Sometimes you'll never be
enough. But you'll always be enough.
On to what happened this week. He had a whole lot of great lessons. A
less active is going to kill a hog, give it to a returning less
active, and they're going it roast it together in an active members'
backyard. It's going to be great! A former investigator just begged us
to teach his family the lessons all over again. Awesome! We got to
bond with an investigator because he was afraid to come to church. I
got to learn a convert's changed idea of repentance, and discover what
I can do to help others feel more accepted at church. It was a great
week! Every week is a great week!
But let's get this straight. God loves you. You are enough. Do your
best, remember what you learned in primary. Repent daily, it will
bring you great joy. Happiness comes from helping others.
Elder Richard Hall
Picture Time! I haven't sent pictures I'm a while, so here is a few
1. The street with two limousines. Always has two limousines parked
next two Each other. Fun times.
2. The mansion. Our area is a bunch of suburbs, and then out ofnowhere there is this beautiful mansion. Pretty great spot.
3. The district! Great photo.4. The crew! All the elders in our apartment. My companion is on the far left.