That too may be a little painful as we rush about doing our Christmas shopping and planning and preparations to make a "perfect day" of our own desire. When my blessings should be used to:
Build up the kingdom of God
Temple and Geneological work
I think that all of these categories are listed on my LDS tithing slip
Perpetual Education Fund
What a blessing to be able to go each Sunday and pick up a little slip of paper that reminds me of exactly what the Lord wishes me to do with my blessings. And once a month that little slip of paper is even delivered conveniently to my door. Which blessings am I giving back to Him and His work.
President Kimball says many other profound and thought provoking things about the military and service in the church and overcoming our economic weakness' but I don't want to go on and on quoting him, so I'll just share his closing thoughts and a few of my own inadequate and not so profound ones.
"the blessings begin to far outweigh the cost of leaving “the world” behind. Herein lies the only true happiness, and therefore we invite and welcome all men, everywhere, to join in this work. For those who are determined to serve the Lord at all costs, this is the way to eternal life. All else is but a means to that end. "
He says the way to overcome our idolatry is faith. It takes faith to leave the world behind. It takes faith to not worry about the "costs" we face all around us. It takes faith to give our whole hearts and souls to His work...as well as our means, time and talents. I need this kind of faith. I desire to be on the path to eternal life.
If I put something else beside the Lord first in my life it doesn't really matter what it is that I put there: money, prestige, fame, my own plan and desires, popularity, acceptance, the easy way, etc.
So, what is my idolatry? Selfishness, and lack of faith...and a few hundred other things :) What a blessing it is to see my weakness' and to know that the Lord can turn them into strengths and use them for His purposes. I will be praying this Christmas season for a new heart and a renewed faith and a greater desire to put the Lord first in all ways in my life.