Leave it to the three year olds of the world to tell the truth as they see it. My brother and his wife had the good fortune of having two at the same time, boys, Landon and Gavin. Double fun! Double trouble! And, double the “out of the mouths of babes” moments!
These two three year olds were right on schedule with their first memorized Primary song. “I am a child of God,” Landon sang out one day. “And He has sent me here,” he continued. His proud parents appreciated every note and every word, pleased with the foundational truths there little fellow was beginning to grasp.
Landon’s rendition of the next part of the song took his devoted parents by surprise. Landon got a little bit creative. He sang out, “Has given me an earthly home With parents KIND OF DEAR!” Oh dear!
Landon’s adaptation was rehearsed for family and friends over telephone lines, over the Internet, and around the dining room table. His lyrics added a little levity to any gathering. There was a kind of knowing smile and laugh from anyone hearing the telling. Deep down I think we all know we fall short of “kind and dear.”
When we take Step 4 we “Make a searching and fearless written moral inventory of ourselves.” When I first read the 12 Steps I thought, “Well, I’ll take the first three steps and the last three, but I’m not taking those steps in the middle. I was afraid of what I might find, things I might remember and have to deal with that had long been put away. I had tried my best to be a good person, a good wife, and a good mother, but I knew in my heart that mistakes had been made, and though I don’t like the word, especially if it is attached to me, sins had been committed. What if I found that the bad outweighed the good?
To my surprise “Making a searching and fearless written moral inventory” of myself turned out to be a great blessing. It was a blessing because it was a careful visit with the Truth, with Jesus Christ, about me. Through the Holy Ghost He showed me my strengths and He verified my weaknesses. With the help of the Lord, taking Step 4 helped me put the events of my life into perspective. Before I took Step 4 I let Satan take my inventory for me. The devil only has two approaches. He either uses his resources to convince us we are doing fine on our own, or that we are worthless – Either that we don’t need God or that God couldn’t possibly need us.
People give a knowing smile when they hear Landon’s rendition of “I Am A Child of God” because his words speak the truth. It’s the same truth we find when we do our 4th Step Inventory. My parents were “kind of dear” and so were their parents and so are the parents of my children. Not one of us has managed to be “kind and dear” fulltime!
None of us will leave a perfect “kind and dear” record for our children. The most important legacy we can leave to others is that we knew our need and we called out for divine direction and power. The love we feel and the divine perspective we receive as we take the middle steps, the ones I wanted to skip, are invaluable. They propel us to sing out, “Lead me, guide me, walk beside me, Help me find the way. Teach me all that I must do To live with Him someday.”1
By Nannette W.
Posted Saturday February 7, 2009
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