Saturday, September 10, 2011

Everything Grey?

Guster is one of my favorite bands. They are a bit of an unknown band  and I like them a ton (if you are a fan of them then I am a fan of you). They were formed in 1991 (the year of my birth...odd) in Boston, Massachusetts. Lately, I have been thinking about one of their songs called, "What You Wish For". The following is the very beginning of the song:

Woke up today to everything grey
And all that I saw just kept goin' on and on
Sweep all the pieces under the bed
Close all the curtains and cover my head
And what you wish for won't come true

I love this song for a lot of reasons.  Guster is just good all the way around. But one thing that I feel from this song is how badly I want to help this guy out! The singer of this song JUST woke up and he hasn't even given the day a chance yet. He is feeling so down in the dumps for some reason and he needs someone or something to get him out of his depression. He feels the urge to close the curtains, crawl into bed, and escape from the dull, grey world.

All of us have felt a little blue at times. I know, from experience, that the best way to fight these depressing feelings is to think positively. Many people think that they have nothing to be positive about. We must do our absolute best to help those who are low. It is our responsibility to help others. A wise man once said, "If you have nothing left, fool everyone with a smile." Smiling goes a loooooong way. If I am ever feeling low and someone gives me smile or helps me smile I feel instant happiness. It is so great!

But unless this happy moment is nourished it will flee away. A short smile lasts only a short while. What is to be done?

There are so many amazing groups and causes out in the world that give aid to those who suffer from famine, genocide, and poverty. They provide food, water, and protection to those in need. Some of these problems that I have just mentioned are far away from us and through donations we can assist these groups and causes. But there are so many people in our communities, towns, and homes who suffer from lack of hope and happiness. It is in the hands of friends AND strangers to help these souls in need. We, as brothers and sisters and fellow children of God must do our part to strengthen and nourish those around us. Especially those of us who are filled with hope.

In the 1994 General Conference address entitled, "Brightness of Hope", Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said,
Being blessed with hope, let us, as disciples, reach out to all who, for whatever reason, have “moved away from the hope of the gospel” (Col. 1:23). Let us reach to lift hands which hang hopelessly down.

We can do this. We can help those in need. As I said earlier, a simple smile goes a long way. But that is only one of the many things that we can do. As I have served the Lord as a missionary I have been able to see the great effects of smiling and waving. It is pleasant, kind, and extremely easy to do. The effects of a simple smile only last a short while (that rhymed...unintentional). One other thing that I have seen produce true miracles is simple conversation. First, ask someone how he or she is doing. Then (this part is extremely important) listen to what they have to say! Truly listen to how they feel. As you do this you will see a brighter light in their eyes and you will realize how much they mean to you and how much you mean to them. Because of this simple (yet deeply meaningful) experience a friendship has begun to grow. And from this lasting friendship comes lasting happiness. More smiling and waving, too. The cycle will then repeat itself. One soul will save another, and another, and another...


As I have seen and experienced this my heart has grown immensely. I have a greater appreciation for those individuals in my life who have been there for me. I also have grown closer to my Savior than I ever would have in any other way. I owe my life to my friends and family have have influenced me to serve a mission because with the experience that I have had as a representative of Christ I have come to know Him more intimately and personally. This is priceless!

Christ's Image, by Heinrich Hoffman

Such experience is priceless because it is something that is timeless and limitless. I can apply the simply beautiful lessons of smiling, waving, and conversing as often as I can throughout my entire existence. I plan on it and I hope that you do too.

Now I would like to go back to "What You Wish For" by Guster. The singer must have hope in order to survive his depression. Without hope even all of these smiles, waves, and conversations aren't going to get anywhere. What must we instill in these individuals? Hope. "And what is it that ye shall hope for? Behold I say unto you that ye shall have hope through the atonement of Christ and the power of his resurrection, to be raised unto life eternal, and this because of your faith in him according to the promise" (Moroni 7:41). The surest thing to have hope for is Jesus Christ. He is our Savior, Redeemer, and Friend. Whatever trial we have faced He has been there and He has overcome because of the miracle of the Atonement. He is our King. His love for us is infinite. When we trust in Him all things are enjoyable and we will be confident that all things will work together for our good. "Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward feasting upon the word of Christ and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life" (behold I say unto you that ye shall have hope through the atonement 2 Nephi 31:20). The Lord promises us that when we do our best and help others we will live with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ again.

The Savior has entrusted us to help and strengthen others through our faith and our kindness. I trust that with these blessings at our fingertips no day has to be a grey day. What we wish for (a perfect hope for eternal life) WILL come true.

1 comment:

Laurel said...

Matty, I love this. Sometimes when we're starting our day in a rotten mood (I MAY have had one of those last week), it just seems so much easier to be grumpy ALL day. It seems silly to say, "I'm going to change my mind and be in a good mood!" But we NEED TO DO THAT! Our attitudes, whatever they are, are contagious, even a simple, short smile. And when we realize that, as well as recognizing all we have to be grateful for, there are just fewer and fewer "grey days".