Monday, November 23, 2009

Playing with the Peas - and the Piccolos

A good family friend who is a RS Pres. shared the following with my wife recently. While it's not an original analogy, I appreciate it - and want to add a little commentary to it:

A friend in our ward talked to our bishop about a problem. He told her that her problem is that she's focusing too much on the peas. She has a wide variety of food available, but she's only putting peas on her plate. [b]It doesn't matter how much you like peas; if that's all you're eating, you're going to get sick of peas![/b] He told her to broaden her palate and try some chicken and some pasta and some fruit, and then the peas will be in their proper perspective again.

There's nothing wrong with peas, in and of themselves. It's just that when they become an obsession that overshadows all the other food available . . .

It's like Elder Wirthlin's wonderful orchestra analogy:

Tied to this misconception is the erroneous belief that all members of the Church should look, talk, and be alike. The Lord did not people the earth with a vibrant orchestra of personalities only to value the piccolos of the world. Every instrument is precious and adds to the complex beauty of the symphony. All of Heavenly Father’s children are different in some degree, yet each has his own beautiful sound that adds depth and richness to the whole.

If all we hear is those incessant piccolos, we miss the beauty of the full orchestra - and, sometimes, fail even to realize that there are lots of other instruments in the orchestra around us. Those of us who don't play the piccolo need to listen carefully for others who also don't play the piccolo - while continuing to appreciate what the piccolos contribute.

I would add that it's MUCH easier to appreciate the orchestra and the other instruments (not just hear the piccolos) when I am playing my own instrument and contributing my own harmony to the overall music being played.


Julie said...

Hi Ray and Michelle- I am thinking about heading up to Nauvoo this weekend for some personal reflection time. I know this is short notice but I was wondering if there was some time this weekend that I could stop by and say hi! Maybe Friday or Saturday? Let me know if that would work with your schedule. If biggie, we can connect another time :-) You can email me at

Papa D said...

Absolutely! We will send you an e-mail.

Tony said...

Neat analogy!

I also thought of what the prophets have said about "gospel hobbies".