One of my biggest desires in life is to know that I touched as many other people for good during my mortal existence as possible. Somehow, I have always felt that my career was getting in the way of doing the most eternal good.
Then, I had a colleague stop me in the hall and tell me what a student had said about me when they were talking about leaders and examples in a club. A few days later, I found an essay that a middle school teacher sent to me. She had assigned her students to write an essay about a teacher who had made a difference in their lives, and this student chose to write about me. I was moved to tears.
Then, I had a sacred experience in the temple which drove home to me a new way of looking at the people around me. I can get so caught up in wanting to give people the joy, light, and knowledge that I have received by having a close friendship with my Savior, Jesus Christ, that I accidentally leave them feeling like I am speaking from a feeling of superiority and judging them as inferior. Essentially, the Spirit whispered that I can calm down and rely more on Heavenly Father. Everyone who has come to earth to a mortal existence is better off than if they hadn’t come at all. The rest is about loving and inviting.
So, realizing that I have been gifted many sacred trusts:
- my husband
- my children
- my colleagues
- my students
- my friends
- acquaintances and strangers I pass as I go through life
I’m beginning to see my purpose in life and my relationship to them in a whole new way. When I pray about people and situations and the answer comes back “just love them,” it isn’t a joke and it isn’t an impossible command. My purpose in life is to reflect Christ, and that is best accomplished by loving others and encouraging the best in them. There has never been anything for me to fix in anyone else. My job is to open my life to others, love them, and follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit to lift and to guide them.