After a quiet Sunday we returned to the office for the first full day in over a week. Surprisingly, it wasn't completely crazy. Not too many phone messages or emails, and the referrals were tolerable. They've become much easier now that I sort of know the areas.
We did have our usual Monday morning office meeting, and that's what I want to include in this blog. Elder Hansen shared a story that President Riggs, our Stake President, had shared with him and his companion a few weeks ago. They'd had a long, exhausting, day and didn't feel real productive. Their last visit for the day was at the Riggs' home. Pres. R could tell they weren't their usual energetic selves, so he gave them this story. It applies quite effectively to missionary work, but also, to any of the Lord's work. It came from a web site that wasn't lds.org related.
A man was sleeping at night in his cabin when suddenly his room filled with light, and God appeared. The Lord told the man he had work for him to do, and showed him a large rock in front of his cabin. The Lord explained that the man was to push against the rock with all his might.
So, this the man did, day after day. For many years he toiled from sun up to sun down; his shoulders set squarely against the cold, massive surface of the unmoving rock, pushing with all of his might. Each night the man returned to his cabin sore and worn out, feeling that his whole day had been spent in vain.
Since the man was showing discouragement, the Adversary (Satan) decided to enter the picture by placing thoughts into the weary mind: "you have been pushing against that rock for a long time, and it hasn't moved." Thus, giving the man the impression that the task was impossible and that he was a failure. These thoughts discouraged and disheartened the man.
Satan said, "Why kill yourself over this?" "Just put in your time, giving just the minimum effort; and that will be good enough." That's what he planned to do, but decided to make it a matter of prayer and take his troubled thoughts to the Lord.
"Lord," he said, "I have labored long and hard in your service, putting all my strength to do that which you have asked. Yet, after all this time, I have not even budged that rock by half a millimeter. What is wrong? Why am I failing?"
The Lord responded compassionately, "My friend, when I asked you to serve Me and you accepted, I told you that your task was to push against the rock with all of your strength, which you have done. Never once did I mention to you that I expected you to move it. Your task was to push.
And now you come to Me with your strength spent, thinking that you have failed. But, is that really so? Look at yourself. Your arms are strong and muscled, your back sinewy and brown, your hands are callused from constant pressure, your legs have become massive and hard. Through opposition you have grown much, and your abilities now surpass that which you used to have.Yet you haven't moved the rock. But your calling was to be obedient and to push and to exercise your faith and trust in My wisdom. This you have done. Now I, my friend, will move the rock."
At times, when we hear a word from God, we tend to use our own intellect to decipher what He wants, when actually what God wants is just a simple obedience and faith in Him. By all means, exercise the faith that moves mountains, but know that it is still God who moves mountains.