S.E. Idaho Mission
Nov 16, 2001
Greetings, I am Abraham. It is wonderful, once again, to be in your midst, my friends. The opportunities for me and this staff of which I am a part in this day and Age of Correction are extremely satisfying, are highly soul saturating in terms of their flavor and their vitality.
This TR is going to be an illustration of my lesson, for you are what you eat. (Gasps and laughter, followed by many comments about lesson topic)[Ed. note: The refreshments just before this lesson were banana splits and the TR did a fine job of consuming his plate.Bill Kelly] My dear friends, I am not going to dwell on this truth at the material level only. Your reaction of laughter suggests to me that you recognize the truth of that statement. Let us think for a moment about the cuisine of the soul, the nourishment of the whole person, not merely the satisfaction of physical hunger. Yes, you are becoming what you take in to your spiritual nutritional system.
Just as you must make choices when you pile up your ice cream with its condiments in order to make a champion banana split, so must you choose what you will pay attention to in order to put together the supper of spiritual nourishment. In a real sense then, in the spiritual and mindal realm, you are what you pay attention to.
The great apostle, Saul of Tarsus, known as Paul, wrote much truth in his letters to the fledgling congregations that he had personally assisted in birthing. Among the truths that he spoke was the concept of paying attention to higher truths. After he had listed a number of virtues he advised the congregation at Phillipi to think on these things, rather than engage in worry, gossip, or other lesser activities. Paul was right, for what occupies your attention becomes, through the mind, the nourishment for the soul.
Now, my friends, think about what occupies your attention during the course of a day. What are the activities you focus on? How much time do you allocate to these activities, and what is the basis for this allocation? I remind you that we have always advised that you keep your balance; so at the onset of this contemplation do not suppose that I am bringing a hidden agenda which advocates spending undue amounts of time in one activity at the detriment of others. Rather, I ask you to look honestly at how you send your time on a daily basis, but look at this without self criticism.
I am not asking you to do this now. I am making an assignment, however. I do wish you to contemplate this during the course of the next several weeks. I know that your days differ. Make a log of each day and write down how much time you spend in each activity. At the end of the week try to categorize your activities in terms of larger groupings such as: chores, recreation, service, stillness, worship, and many others. These are just examples and not categories you must use.. Develop your own. If you will do this, it will assist you in discovering how it is that you occupy your time, what it is that you pay attention to by this time allocation.
I want you, also, to note what you think about. You could have reminiscence, remembering the past; you could have worry, anticipating future problems; you could have gratitude as you contemplate the gifts that are yours; you could have resentment as you think back over the wrongs that have been done to you; you could have thoughts of forgiveness. The playing field is very broad.
Please do not become obsessive/compulsive in completing this task or you will have no fun at all in complying with my request. The purpose of all this analysis is to develop a baseline, which means a clear picture of where you are at this point in terms of what you pay attention to in all the aspects of your life.
I sense a certain amount of discomfort in your minds, a feeling that the term paper is too long for the few credits the course is offering you. So I will extend the time. I would like your papers turned in before Christmas.