Never Be a Lobster
By Vera Entwistle of Eugene, OR, USA
Do not be discouraged. You have not been promised an easy path, but you have been assured that the Spirit that calls you will also accompany you. That Spirit is even now touching alive the souls of those who feel the passion of discipleship burning deeply within. Many others will respond if you are persistent in your witness and diligent in your mission to the world. —Doctrine and Covenants 162:3a, b
I felt discouraged and depressed, but I could not put my finger on the cause. I began to consider with whom I had spent time in the past few days and what we had talked about. I suddenly realized, after a long discussion with a discouraged friend, I had left her being unable to lift her spirits. For every encouraging statement I shared, she countered with a negative. It clung to me and left me with an overwhelming sadness, and this was the cause of my depression.
I remembered a story about a fisherman who never put a lid on his basket of lobsters. People asked if he was not afraid they would climb over the edge and get away. He said, “Heck, no. The moment one of them makes a bid for freedom, the others drag him back in.” I smiled as I pictured myself as that frantic lobster trying to escape the negativity of my friend.
I wondered if I was a like the lobsters in the basket in anyone else’s life, countering positives with negatives and preventing them from escaping to freedom from their depression. I resolved to do as that old song says “…accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative.” I resolved most of all…never be a lobster!
Prayer for Peace
Ever-faithful God, we know you would not call us just to abandon us on the path. We have only to listen to know you are with us. We feel your Spirit attend us whenever we share your encouragement and peace.
Spiritual Practice: Healing for Broken Spirits
Begin with quiet prayer. Ask God to help you detect some “sore places” in the body of Christ and God’s creation. Become aware of people who feel separated, wounded, or left out. Reflect on or write a short journal entry of healing words to at least one person who comes to mind. Ask God for words that will touch this person’s broken spirit like healing ointment. Keep this person in your heart and prayers today and act on any ideas that come to bring blessing and wholeness.
Today, God, if I must be a lobster, I will be strong enough to pull someone out the cage of discouragement with me!