A Solid Person

6 Oct

This morning at the Joseph Smith Farm, before we opened up for tours, the missionaries had a little devotional. We do this every morning. We sing a hymn, read some scriptures or share spiritual thoughts, and we say a prayer. Today the senior Elder at the site asked us to mention something we enjoyed from Conference. My thought was from Elder Per G. Malm, who spoke Sunday afternoon.

Elder Malm described a tree he had seen in Sweden. From the street, it looked like any other tree. But when he got up close, he found that the tree was hollow, and had been filled over the years with trash. At some point, something had gotten into the tree, infected it, and hollowed it out. As time passed, bit by bit the tree filled with garbage. Eventually, someone put a firecracker in the tree and it was destroyed.

Elder Malm then warned that we must beware of those things with can destroy from the inside out. We must work to be solid people, standing tall and strong with the help of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

I was really struck with the contrast between that hollow tree and the full, lustrous trees around it. That one tree could be so empty, and the others solid and firm has really stuck in my mind. I want to be one of those sturdy, solid trees. I want my life to be full of meaningful and supportive thoughts and activities, so many that there is no room for any trash. I want to be impervious to firecrackers, to be able to stand on my own, drawing strength from my roots and reaching toward the sky.

A life like that isn’t the easy way, I know. A tree like that needs constant nourishment of sunshine and water. There is a whole inside to grow, not just the outside, so it needs more care and work than a hollow tree. If I really want to be that way, I have to nourish my spirit with scripture and prayer, study of the Lord’s will and ways. I must focus on what lies inside me.

I just thought it was a beautiful analogy.

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One Response to “A Solid Person”

  1. Dr. B. October 7, 2010 at 8:17 am #

    This is a well-thought out post with a lofty and noble goal of purifying our lives. It is amazing how much trash we encounter in our lives. I guess we need to live trash-free lives which is hard to do considering the music, and media we encounter. Most of us have numbed our senses as we listen to and watch things that really aren’t very uplifting. How solid of a person are we when we crave something that will rot our souls? Many of us know better but we do nothing to change the way we are going. I hope this post will affect someone that wants to better their life. I remember when one of my four daughters was on a mission she would ask about the show Gossip Girl. She would tell me I know it isn’t a very good show but I want to keep up on it. If you are going to teach the gospel and ask people to stand on higher ground than you have to walk the walk and talk the talk. There is no room for hypocrisy if want to be a solid person in the eyes of God. Unfortunately most of us fall short and need some help.

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