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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Behind the "facade"...

I like knowing in advance when people are coming by. Even if it is just a few minutes notice. You see, you can shove a whole lot of stuff into closets in a few minutes, thus giving the illusion you keep a tidy house. Sometimes when I'm cleaning, my son asks who is coming over. Now, in my defense, I do clean- often. But for some reason he seems to equate cleaning with visitors.

Why bring this up?

Because I got thinking about the "facades" we put up for others to see in our lives. We put on a smile at church when we are really feeling like crying. We try to keep our voices even and a smile on our face in public while asking our children to stop climbing the walls when we really want to yell at them that their lives are about to be cut drastically short if they don't get down this minute.

I think sometimes in my church we tend to try to appear as though we have fewer flaws than we really do. In talks we tend to use only the good examples of home or visiting teaching, tell the uplifting stories of when we were able to serve another, etc. However, I think we also tend to see only those ideal qualities in others as well. We often tend to compare our bad qualities to others' good qualities. The problem with doing this is that we can't see beyond the facade. We can't see the problems or trials the other person may have going on in their life. We have no way of knowing what difficulties this other person has had to face to get to a certain point in their life.

Case in point, my stake relief society president. I think she is so composed, so well spoken, so successful. She is a nurse, very organized, composed- you name it. I admire her so much. Yet today, she told the relief society that she was a convert to the church. She has only been a member for a short time. I was shocked! She told of how she had to learn more modest ways to dress and to clean up her language after she joined the church. I never would have known how far she had come had she not told us this. I was amazed that she was just a normal person with normal problems just like the rest of us women sitting in there.

It really opened my eyes. It reminded me that every single one of us is unique. We can't judge, nor compare ourselves to others. It reminded me that every home has a facade, but it's what is inside that really matters.