For the last couple General Conferences, I’ve taken time before hand to ponder and write up a list of things that I’m trying to sort out, questions I have, problems I’m trying to solve. I keep that list with me as I’m watching Conference, and listen for answers to the things on my list. Each time, by the end, I have notes next to each thing on the list; some times a complete answer, other times just a lead of a direction I need to study and think about.
This time was no different. So many things jumped out at me, but for the most part, the notes next to my bullet point list are qualities that I need to explore and develop.
There were some fantastic (FANTASTIC!) talks, but the one that spoke to me the loudest and clearest was Kent D. Watson’s talk on temperance. I’ve never really thought about temperance before (outside of a Prohibition kind of context), but he presented it as a divine quality of Christ, one that encompasses not only moderation in food, but moderation in mood, in everything. He told of a car crash he was involved in, where the windshield shattered, but he was unscratched because the window was made of tempered glass. And then he said this (or something close to it), which was direct revelation to me:
“Tempered glass is created in purifying fire. It has increased strength, and when it is under intense stress will not break into sharp shards that injure those nearby.”
How often do I break into sharp shards under stress? Oh so often. How much do I need to be more temperate? There’s not words.
Other qualities of diligence, love, consistency, discernment, and selfless service popped out at me as well.
I’ve almost completed the Young Women’s Personal Progress program for the second time (as a leader, 3rd time in my life- Go me!) and it’s been really nice to have a focused way to study and practice qualities and principles that are central to my belief of who I am and who God is. So I think when I’m done, I’m going to create something similar for myself to study these qualities that I want to develop.
How do you work on qualities you want to have? I rely on reading a lot, I know there are other ways but reading is my go-to. So if you have ideas, please share.