Monday, June 28, 2010

Focus on your GIFTS...which are stable.

A recent BYU devotional caught my attention this week, and I thought it had great potential for a RS Meeting idea.

Economic conditions are s-l-o-w-l-y improving - so slow in fact, that it's hard to see much progress.  Many are still struggling with job & financial stress.  For families & individuals who are lucky enough to have stable jobs right now, they may feel a bit of (anxious) gratitude - but realize that could change at any time.

This devotional is entitled "What Is Your Calling in Life?" by Jeffrey Thompson of BYU.  It is available in both audio and a transcript.  Listen to it first, then examine the written transcript (that is downloaded at this LINK)

You may have a resource in your ward who would be able to present these ideas - which are based on the Gospel.  It may be the kind of activity/workshop that both Priesthood & Relief Society would benefit from together.

He presents several examples & stories that illustrate his message - one in particular is about zookeepers, and how they view their 'job' as a calling.

Here is one nugget of wisdom included in his talk that I thought was excellent and applies to all of us - no matter our situation at present...

When you are negatively affected by unstable economic conditions, focus on your gifts, which are stable.   You may have to take a job that is below your level of qualification.  If so, perform the work with drive, and use your gifts to put your unique stamp on your contributions. Doing so will increase your chances of finding better employment later.  You may even suffer joblessness for a time. Research shows that unemployment can have a devastating long-term impact on self-confidence, on health, and on happiness.   

I submit that having a sense of calling is part of your inoculation against the vicissitudes of the job market. Know yourself.  Know what your gifts are. And define yourself by your gifts—not by your lack of a job.  Contrary to what the world might tell you, you don’t have to have a job to express your calling in life. If the world at present is not willing to pay you for what you can do, then donate your spiritual gifts to worthy causes—perhaps through public service or volunteering—until the value of those gifts becomes so evident that people want to pay you a fair wage for them.  Even in a booming economy, you may have to create your own opportunities to fulfill your calling in life.  Despite what most fairy tales imply, real-life princes and princesses don’t just wait around for their dreams—or dream jobs—to come true.