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Fullness of Times: Talk
Our Treasure Inside
Sunday, 23 April 2000
When you hear the word Easter what do you think of? What imagery is conjured up in your mind? For me it has always been an image of an extra-large egg, brightly colored with pastel greens and yellows and reds, with zigzagging stripes. Perhaps it is a plastic egg, which when opened reveals its treasure inside.
Like that egg, you and every human have a treasure inside of you. And that treasure is more valuable than all the gold in Fort Knox. Now if you have this treasure, which is so valuable, then where is the richest place in the world? Right away your probably saying, "It's inside of me." No.
The richest place in all the world. Now perhaps you may be thinking of Saudi Arabia or Kuwait with all that oil, where the people are so rich they go out and buy one Rolls Royce after another after another after another. Perhaps that is the richest place in the world? No. What about all the diamond mines in South Africa? No. What about all the gold mines? No. Keep guessing and I'll probably keep telling you, "No".
So now you’re asking, "Well then where is it?" It's not very from where you and I live. It's the graveyard. Now you're wondering, "How is the graveyard the richest place in the world?" It's because the graveyard is full of dreams that were never fulfilled. The graveyard is full of ideas and plans that never became a reality. The graveyard is full of books that were never written. And the graveyard is full of songs people wrote that no one will ever hear.
Now when you take all of that potential—all of that treasure that you have inside of you—and you don't use it every day, and you take it down to the grave with you, you make the graveyard richer and rob the future generations.
Perhaps you don't quite understand what I mean when I say you rob the future generations, or rob the future. Let me explain. How many of you ever thought about writing a book? If you don't use your potential, or the treasure that you have inside of you, to write that book, there is some child that hasn't been born yet that won't have an opportunity to read what you should be writing right now. Maybe some of you have thought about becoming an educator or a teacher. And just think about this—if you don't use your potential to get that degree to become that teacher then there is some child that hasn't been born yet that won't have an opportunity to sit in the classroom that you should be teaching. And that's the way we rob the future.
Do you want to know one of the purposes in life? It is this: Every day that your eyes open your purpose in life is to use as much as you can of that treasure inside of you. Spend every bit of it if you possibly can. Use more of the potential that you have. Do you know that we have everything that we need in life to be successful? There is nothing here on this planet that was put here without a purpose.
We live in a very beautiful part of this country—the Evergreen State. Some of you probably take time to explore parts of it. Wherever you go you can see all of the beautiful green trees. And at this time of the year all of the plants and colorful flowers come to life.
Now just think about this—how many of you have a plant or a flower or a tree inside or outside of your house? Do you think that the purpose of the tree, the plant and the flower is for us to enjoy its beauty? The purpose of the tree, the plant and the flower is to produce oxygen for us to breathe. You see, that's its real purpose. Some times we get our purpose mixed up in life.
You were not put here on this earth to be beautiful to someone else. That's not your purpose in life. You were not put here for fun and games—even though you might have a lot of fun. But that's not your purpose. You were not put here to "chill" even though you may be cool. That's not your purpose. But your purpose in life is to use all of the potential that you have each and every day.
So let's say tomorrow morning all of the trees, all of the plants and all of the flowers woke up around 4:00 in the morning and decided, "Today we are going to not use our potential". What do you think would happen? "Today we are not going to produce any oxygen." Just think about that—life on this planet ceasing to exist all because of just one element in nature deciding to not use its potential. That's real powerful!
Everything and everybody has a purpose on earth. And maybe we need to daily ask ourselves this question, "Whom do I kill when I don't use mine?" Who do you destroy when you don't use your potential every day? Like I said, everything here has a purpose in life.
Now consider for a moment if Jesus chose to not use His potential. Consider where we'd be if the Boy Jesus had not made the effort to study His scriptures and pray. Consider if on the Mount of Beatitudes he chose to not give His sermon; if He didn't use His potential to teach the word, to heal the sick and to raise the dead.
And just consider! If in that great Council in Heaven He had not stepped forward and offered, "Here am I, send me", or if our Savior failed to use His potential in the Garden of Gethsemane saying, "Remove this cup from me . . . and I mean it!" What if He didn't use His potential on the cross at Calvary? And oh what a quandary we'd be in if He had neglected to use His potential to rise from the dead.
But Jesus did use His potential! He did study His scriptures and He did pray! He did give His sermon on the mount! He did teach the word! He did heal the sick and raise the dead! He did not shrink, but partook of that bitter cup in the Garden of Gethsemane that we might be forgiven! He did not fear nor shun the cross, and He did rise from the dead that third day bringing about the resurrection of all mankind!
Why are we doing what we're doing? Why do you have the job? Why do you attend church? Every day there are choices to make. Every morning you wake up you decide whether is going to be a good day or bad. Perhaps right now your deciding, "Should I go to college?" or "Am I going to finish?" or "Should I go on a mission?" or "Should I marry this person I've been dating?" You have all of these choices. But you've got to understand that life is full of choices and every day you're going to make them. One of the greatest powers you have is the God-given power to choose.
But you want to know something? There are some choices that you didn't have. Maybe you didn't have the choice of who you were born as, but you do have the choice of who you will become. Perhaps you didn't have a choice of who your parents are or were, but you want to know something? You do have a choice of who your children's parents will be. You didn't have a choice of the financial conditions of your parents, but you do have choice of your own. You didn't have a choice of the intellectual capacity of your parents, but you do have a choice about your own. You've got choices in life.
You've got to remember that every day you can make a great choice for yourself. Once you discover what your real purpose in life is all about you’re going to see things begin to happen easier in your life. You've got to understand first of all that the whole universe is here just to support you. Just like that tree and that plant and that flower provide you with oxygen; the whole universe is here just to support you.
Life is not made to be complicated. We're the ones who complicate life. Life was not designed to be confusing. We're the ones that confuse life.
What do you want out of life? Everybody is seeking the same thing. Everybody wants to be happy. What will make you happy? Think about this—the greatest song hasn't been written yet. Neither has the greatest book. The closest family hasn't been formed yet. You have such a great opportunity in the world to do the best that you have ever done in your life.
I want you to remember something. The quality and quantity of your life is based on the quality and quantity of your thinking. And if you think little-bitty negative thoughts, little-bitty negative things will happen in your life. You can change the way you think. Once you discover your real purpose in life you become more creative, you become more motivated, you become more goal oriented. You become more like the Savior.
May we all follow the example of our Savior Jesus Christ and use our full potential every day is my prayer in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
©2000 Gregory Scot Collins. All rights reserved.
Adapted from "Becoming a Mental Giant", Lester L. Brown, ©1994 L. L. Brown & Associates.
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