As an addict involved in the LDS Addiction Recovery Program, I had to dig deep to find and embrace my inner Mormon. What follows is my journal from this point forward.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Facebook Dialogue About Parents and Standards


A recent comment from my nephew and my response:

Nephew:
 "I know who I am. I know what I'm not. Nobody can or will tell me differently. I refuse to be influenced by the world. I make my own choices. If I mess up I suffer the consequences. But I won't mess up. I've seen the mistakes that people make between the sex, drugs, morals, standards, the affairs, the cheaters, the addicts. I understand the consequences of such actions. I do not disregard them, and in fact analyze the outcome of every situation from all possible viewpoints before I make a decision. Call me cocky, but I am smarter than the average 18 year old. I know my parents love me and want the best for me. I understand that fully, but they are going about it in a completely wrong way. I do not have it all figured out but neither do they. All I want is to be understood. I am my own man. I'm not messing up. All I want is to be trusted.I have done nothing to, mess that up so far, so I would like it if they and everyone else stopped assuming the worst..."

Me:
I was, as usual, having a little fun in my previous comment. But my reference to the article was legit. It's a great read.


Either way, I struck a nerve in my earlier post. I apologize for my abrasiveness.


Now I can either back off of your last comment, or I can decide to go in and address it full scooby snack. Your parents, aunts, uncles, and cousins, knowing me and often lamenting that familiarity, already know which way I am going.


Yeah, maybe you're cocky, but then being called smarter than the average 18 year old about as big a compliment as being call the sexiest greeter at Wal-Mart, so maybe not that cocky. Anybody can examine their body of peers and decide themselves slightly above them. Most can see themselves considerably above them. Sometimes we see ourselves as less than them. All three are correct depending on the criteria you use as the guage.


The thing is, that's not the measurement you have been called to use. Seriously, if the best standard you got is not going to do drugs, become and addict or engage in premarital sex or extramarital affairs, you have kinda set the bar a little low. I don't think when Elder Ballard spoke to the young men about raising the bar, he had this level in mind.


So, as you go on with your choice and proceed confident in who you are, ask yourself if your self-assessment included these standards:
-- Mosiah asked us to become as a child, humble, meek, submissive, willing to submit to all things that the Lord inflicts upon us even as a child does submit to his father.
-- When Nephi was the only person in his family who did not lose faith, and even when his father gave up hope and murmured against the Lord, Nephi still went to him and asked him what direction to go.
-- The very young Stripling warriors were described as true in whatsoever thing they were trusted and were preserved by their diligence to the words of their mothers.
-- Upon learning what his father had been told to do by the Lord, Isaac fully complied and allowed himself to be made a sacrifice on the alter.
-- The fifth commandment, thou shalt hono they father and thy mother, is the first commandment with a blessing attached.
-- When Ammon was a servant to Lamoni, he was so diligent in keeping the instructions given by his master that Lamoni considered him a great spirit.
-- When the boy Joseph was slave into egypt his faithfulness to both the Lord and his master put him second only to the Pharoah in command.
-- When Nephi was asked to get the plates by his father, he immediately recognized his father's inspiration.
-- When Alma asked his son Helaman if he would keep his commandments, Helaman told his father "I will keep thy commandments with all my heart."


In all of these and many other examples, we see people whose faithfulness to the Lord include faithfulness to their leaders and most of them, faithfulness to their parents. This is the standard you have been called to bear.


So we ask you, do you have the inner strength to make the neck muscles more pliable? Can you turn your gaze away from the world and back into the eyes of those who have the greatest stake in your success? Unless your parents have directed you to do that which is contrary to the Lord's will, and I am 100 percent certain they have not, you may consider that your unwillingness to follow them indicates that you have already lowered your standards a bit too far.

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