Good afternoon everybody!
Boston's great as usual. Still in the dog days of summer, but September quickly approaches.
The family's going to Ireland this week for some much needed R&R. I'm not jealous though. I've got all the Irish catholics in the world to hang out with here so it can't be that different. Right?
This week we got to hit the road again, which is always glorious. Wednesday we were in New Haven, Yale campus, for a portable visitor center tour of the chapel there. The buildings right on campus and has a sweet rec room on the fourth floor for seminary/institute. Wish I went to seminary there...
Friday we were in Brockton and Hingham. I was with the English elders but we still walked some of my old streets in Brockton and it was a great day. We taught a guy named Tsunami, who was cape verdean. So that's always gonna be good.
Saturday we headed down to Waterford/Groton, Connecticut, right on the southern coast of CT. Groton has a heavy naval presence and is a beautiful place. I spent the day in Waterford helping the elders there and we had some great opportunities.
Sunday was spent back in Lynnfield, MA (north of Cambridge) (the same chapel we went to on vacation in Rockport). It was a FABULOUS church experience. One of the speakers answered a question I've been pondering for 4 or 5 years now. Then they had a wonderful lady get baptized who was introduced to the church by her friend at law school here.
The title of the email is my thought for the week. Its a talk by President Kimball from 1977 about how the Savior epitomized all the attributes of perfect leadership. One quote specifically got my attention, when talking about how leaders must understand others the way Jesus did:
"Jesus saw sin as wrong but also was able to see sin as springing from deep and unmet needs on the part of the sinner. This permitted him to condemn the sin without condemning the individual."
The world teaches us that bad people do bad things because they are bad. But Jesus reverses it in his mind: he knows and sees us for our potential and value, and is able to do this because he knows the source of our sins is not innate desire to do wickedly but deep and unmet spiritual needs. When we focus on those needs, we can finally have the ability to hate the sin and love the sinner-- including the sinner in ourselves. When we minister to that deeper level rather than trying to cure surface symptoms, we witness real growth and true repentance. Jesus' goal was enduring spiritual strength, not superficial solutions. His goal should also be ours.
Here's the talk: https://www.lds.org/ensign/1979/08/jesus-the-perfect-leader?lang=eng