Friday, February 1, 2013

Jump in with Both Feet, but Don't Feel Like You Have to Swim at the Deep End Immediately

I sent the following message to a friend who is returning to activity in the Church after an extended absence.  He had expressed concerns about being overwhelmed and "flooded" by everything that can be asked of someone who is active in the Church - and having almost to re-learn many principles he has forgotten in his time away. 

I remember a few years ago watching the Chilean miners who had been underground so long being rescued. One thing struck me as I watched.  
The miners were all given sunglasses to wear as they emerged from the tunnel - since they had been over 2,000 feet underground and away from sunlight for over two months. If they had come out of the ground without eye protection, the increased light would have been very damaging - and they needed to wear the sunglasses for a while until their eyes adjusted. It was important not to rush the process - to take whatever time was necessary to avoid overexposure.
That reminded me of Pres. Uchtdorf's amazing talk in General Conference a few years ago about turbulence and the need to slow down while experiencing turbulence. (It might have been around the same time that the miners were rescued, which might be why thinking about one triggered memories of the other.)
The common message is that when new views hurt old eyes, it's important to slow down, wear protective eye gear AS LONG AS NECESSARY and gradually adjust to the increased light and truth.
So, take your time.  Jump in with both feet, but don't feel like you have to swim at the deep end immediately.  Enjoy getting acclimated to the water once again - at whatever depth is comfortable for you as you develop your swimming muscles again.


Paul said...

I really like these thoughts.

I think it's a learned skill in the church to say no to certain things, but it's ok, too. Even better to say, "Maybe not yet."

Mama D said...

Paul, I like the concept of "Maybe not yet."