Sunday, July 11, 2010

What I Learned in Church: Dog Poop

It isn't every Sunday you hear the phrase "dog poop" over the pulpit.

I was visiting my daughter's single's ward, which might help to explain it. Young single adults can get away with stuff like that. They're talking to their peers, after all.

My daughter's friend had been asked to speak about personal trials she'd faced and how turning her life over to Christ had helped her deal with them and find peace.

A particular trial she mentioned had left her angry and bitter, and for a long time she just couldn't get over it.

One day she talked to a friend's mom, who'd gone through something similar. The mom said, "Maddy, I was in the back yard cleaning up dog poop, and I stepped right in it. It made me so mad! I was getting it all over the back yard and tracking it into the house. Then it dawned on me that I was doing the same thing with my bitterness. I was tracking it wherever I went and around everyone I saw, and leaving it there to stink."

It's not the most elegant analogy I've ever heard and I doubt I'll hear it repeated in General Conference any time soon, but I have to say it held a powerful...uh...essence that I won't soon forget.

It made me stop and think about how much "dog poop" I may have tracked into other people's lives over the years, figuratively speaking. And resolve to stop.

And it reminded me, once again, why I have a cat.