Yesterday morning before I left for Church I was practicing some Children's Primary songs on the piano (I play the piano for the children's meeting) and found that the pedal on my piano was squeaky. I remembered that it had been squeaking last week when I was practicing, but somehow it bothered and distracted me more yesterday than it had last week. For the life of me, I could not ignore the squeaking and noticed that I was making more mistakes than normal on the easy music I was playing.
The squeaky pedal was a distraction to me that I could not seem to shake, and then the thought came to me, "what other distractions are keeping me from progressing in other areas of my life"?
We all have distractions in our lives that can keep us from moving in a forward direction. Obvious distractions in my life are the television, facebook, and playing games on my phone. I'm not saying that we can't enjoy these things, but when I'm doing these things in place of activities such as reading and pondering or listening to good music which would improve my life mentally, physically and spiritually, then I am choosing to stay stagnant.
Yesterday in Church a woman talked about her awful basement ( hidden from any visitors since the door to the basement enters from the garage instead of inside the house) how she hates it, that it is dark and musty and unfinished and dirty. It is now her family's project to clean it up starting with the floors. They are choosing to do it by getting on their hands and knees and scraping, scrubbing and washing the dirt away (as opposed to renting a machine). She compared that to our souls and the process of exploring areas not exposed to anyone else but ourselves and then with the help of the Savior and his atonement, in cleaning those undesirable areas that are more difficult to clean up and to even view.
Last night I had a not so comfortable "aha moment" where I was able to see something I had not clearly seen that needed scrubbing away with the help of the Savior. I really wish there was a machine I could rent to make it easier, to feel a little less pain. The ironic part of seeing this flaw in myself was that I was watching a movie, albeit a more spiritual movie, when I saw and felt the desire to have this flaw taken away. Maybe Heavenly Father shows us, sometimes, through methods we are familiar with? ( In fairness to myself, I was at the point last night, ready to view and ask for help to "scrub my basement floor". )
How many years have I stayed distracted from really seeing in me something I needed help with?
Many years ago when I was watching my youngest son, Rob, play in a golf tournament I listened to one of the Dads of a golfer tell the story of Tiger Woods'
Dad throwing leaves and things at Tiger when he practiced so he could
learn to concentrate and focus solely on the task at hand: hitting the
golf ball. Obviously, Tiger Woods learned to ignore those distractions
for his golf game; with practice I'll be able to ignore that squeaky
pedal (or oil it!) and master the songs I'd like to.
We all have distractions in our lives; some are thrown at us and some are chosen by us.
It is our choice what to do with them; we can push through them to develop focus or we can remove some of them. Whichever we choose, let's choose to move forward in creating more joy and more growth. We only have this life; let's choose wisely.