Thursday, July 16, 2015

Self-Reliance Tip of the Week - Pain and Panic

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Pain and Panic...(in the voice of Bobcat Goldthwait) We really are your friends!

Disney made a movie 18 years ago called "Hercules". It is their goofy take on the aforementioned mythological character. My two favorite characters are the minions of Hades, Pain and Panic. They are almost always sent to do the dirty work. They often like to appear to be something different, like a soft cuddly bunny and a cute chipmunk to deceive those who are around them. My favorite part is when they get in trouble for wearing the merchandise of the now famous Hercules. It is a good thing these things don't really exist...or do they?

In reality, pain and panic do like to appear to be something different than they really are. Some people think when they panic and run around like a chicken about to be prepared for dinner, that they are being productive. Not so. Painpanicfear, frustrationdiscouragement, overwhelm and all other emotions that fall into the same category belong to the author of lies. How can we avoid them?

Luckily, we have some amazing people on our team. Here is what Elder Jeffry R. Holland said: 

"We know for certain that if and when everything else in the latter days is down or dying; if governments, economies, industries, and institutions crumble; if societies and cultures become a quagmire of chaos and insecurity, nevertheless, through it all the gospel of Jesus Christ and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that bears that gospel to the world will stand triumphant. It will stand undefiled in God’s hand until the very Son of God Himself comes to rule and reign as Lord of lords and King of kings. Nothing is more certain in this world. Nothing is more sure."
-Jeffrey R. Holland

So, how do we prevent the pain and panic and live in the "we will stand triumphant" in the craziness of today's world?

I found this Ensign article written by William G. Hartly that is 14 years old. It is LOADED with some crazy cool information that we all could learn from. 

  • Lesson 1: When we ignore preparedness counsel, we can expect unhappy consequences.

Before leaving Nauvoo, members had Church-published lists of what to take with them. But when the first companies left in February 1846, several hundred members panicked and crossed the Mississippi River without proper clothes, food, or shelter. As a result, they brought suffering upon themselves, slowed down others, and drained resources from those properly prepared.

I'll give you an example of this. When it is the night before Halloween and people decide that now is the time to get their costumes, Wal-mart is raided. There is:
  • no selection and
  • a huge mess
  • grumpy irritated a huge rush for the last Iron Man costume....
Solution: Halloween costumes come out almost right after Easter, why would they wait until the night before when they surely won't get the costume they wanted? Plan ahead and avoid the rush andpanic :)

  • Lesson 2: Protect against nature.
Trail death tolls reveal that the highest numbers of deaths were among infants and the elderly. Some pioneers became cold and wet because wagon covers and tents were not waterproof. Others suffered sunburns when they lost their hats. Their lips chapped from the dry air, wind, and sun. Many suffered diarrhea and lacked medicine to stop it. Some travelers, while dressed properly for summer heat, lacked coats and gloves for the cold mountain temperatures experienced before reaching the Salt Lake Valley. In addition, pioneers had to guard against wildlife, particularly snakes and wolves. In many campsites they suffered from swarms of mosquitoes that badly hurt children and angered horses and cattle.

We cannot prepare for everything, I totally get that. However, these few simple things like hatslip balmcoatsgloves,sunscreenwinter clothing, bug repellent and a waterproof tent/ wagon would have prevented some of the pain they experienced...and even prevented the death of some people.

One Final Lesson

Along with all of the practical lessons history teaches, one more lesson comes through: maintain good attitudes during troubled times. A sense of humor is like salve on a wound.
On 6 April 1846 about 2,000 Saints with about 400 covered wagons were bogging down in Iowa rains and mud, trying to reach campsites beside Locust Creek. “I was in the rain all day,” President Young noted in his diary, “arranging the wagons, pitching tents, chopping wood until all were comfortable.” That dreary day most members had good excuses to feel miserable. However, Patty Sessions noted in her diary that “[Brother] Brigham came up with his company driving his team in the rain and mud up to his kne[e]s as happy as a king.”

My family and my brother's family wanted to go to Arivipa Canyon for July 4th weekend. We camped in Eden the night before...not the best idea ever because it was so DARN-TOOTIN' hot! I had many thoughts and feelings of the family of Lehi and Nephi while there because...they lived this for 8 years! It was easy to grumble and get cranky because, well, it wasn't as fun as we had hoped. While we couldn't do anything about the heat, the idea crossed my mind to make up new words to "I Love The Mountains" - and it went like this (ahem): 

I love the desert
I love the blazing heat
I love the beetles (they were really loud)
I might just want to eat
I love to sweat just like a slippery pig...boom -de-adda- boom-de- adda- boom-de-adda boom-de-aye

It really was amazing how quickly a little silly song could lift spirits and change the feelings about the situation. In the morning we came to the July 4th breakfast and listened to Bro. Cluff...the frustrations of the night quickly faded and we remembered how lucky we were to live in America. Thanks Bro. Cluff. You're my hero.

I really would like to encourage you to read this Ensign article by Bro. Hartley. There is so much more in it that I haven't covered. There really is some excellent words of advice. Pain and Panic are not our friends. They do not help us in any way. No matter their disguise, they will always hurt us. When we live as Elder Holland described in his quote above as the Church will go forth, it will be "undefiled". If Elder Holland is on our team, we must choose to be on the Lord's team. If we live as such and listen to the voice of the prophets and follow their counsel, we will not be lead astray. Here's a link to "Sturdy Shoes and a Waterproof Tent" 

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