Sunday, August 7, 2011

I can't do it!

This is a phrase I hear from my now 3-year-old almost every day. 

Before her, I was under the impression that children thought they could do ANYTHING-- and that only adults had these self-imposed limitations.  I was wrong.

Putting on socks, buckling herself into her carseat, putting on stretchy pants-- all these are hard things for any little child, but mine gets discouraged very, very easily.  I have to coax her very gently, all without enabling her.

She's currently learning to buckle herself into her 5-point harness carseat.  The top buckle she can do consistently, but the bottom buckles are very difficult for small hands.  I encourage and help her where I know she can't do it herself, but I make sure not to enable her by doing what she can do herself.  I know that the more she does herself, the stronger her hands will become, and it won't be too long before she doesn't need any help at all!

Today in Relief Society, I saw how my daughter's situation mirrors my own in many ways. Sometimes there are tasks that seem to be just too hard to do-- bearing my testimony to my non-member friends is one that comes to mind.  When I think of being in such a situation, my mind turns off as I think to myself, "That's too hard, it won't work!"  Meanwhile, I can feel Heavenly Father gently prodding me to do it, no matter the cost.

The following verse came to mind: Mosiah 24:15
And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.

Heavenly Father doesn't hate us for our discouragement. He knows we can do these things, we just have to practice. That practice will make us stronger, and pretty soon what was once impossible for us to do becomes routine.  In the meantime, He encourages us and somehow, makes up where we lack.

Soon, my daughter will have the independence to buckle herself into her carseat.  And with practice, when I take every opportunity provided me, I will find it easier to share my testimony with others, and that fire within me will burn all the stronger because of it.

Just because I love kid feet!

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