Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Paying the Price

Dave told me once of a small disagreement at the high school between him and a teacher. The teacher was complaining about some changes being made by the administration and complained to Dave, "What gives you the right to make these decisions?"

Dave calmly replied, "I have more training, education and more certifications and furthermore, I have the job title that says I have the right. I paid the price." He also would be the one paying the price if things didn't work out but he didn't bring that up at the time.

Often people will say to me, "Oh, I wish I could move to Hawaii." When they do I think about Dave's encounter with that teacher years ago and respond, "you can if you're willing to pay the price."  Usually they think I mean the price in money, which is not what I mean, but I generally don't bring up what I really mean.

You can move to Hawaii if you find a job, any job nevermind what it pays. You can if you are willing to uproot your family.  You can if you are willing to sell most of what you own, including things you love and have worked hard to get.  You can if you are willing to move away from family and friends and familiar surroundings. You can if you are willing to do without some of the things you thought were necessities and live in a place smaller than you are accustomed to. You can do ANYTHING YOU WANT if you are willing to pay the price.

Yesterday as I was doing my taxes and got to the part where I itemize all my charitable contributions I nearly had a breakdown.  I had to go through pages and pages of handwritten notes and pictures of all the things that I donated to Goodwill, Salvation Army and Deseret Industries.  All the things that I had loved and cared for and worked hard for and then had to abandon.  I didn't expect it to affect me and was unprepared for the rush of memories and feelings that it brought back.

The cut glass cake plate with gold trim we got for our wedding. The dread in the pit of my stomach of being separated from Dave and then from loved ones. The beautiful blue porcelain pitcher that I used as a vase for my fresh cut Dahlias. The headaches from the stress of preparing for the move and lack of sleep. The snow boots and bibs I bought the girls one month before learning about the new job.  The fatigue from the seemingly endless packing and cleaning and purging. The boxes and boxes of books we had collected over 15 years. The longing for home and the anxiety of what awaited me on the other end of the plane ride.

These feelings reminded me again of Dave's statement to his teacher friend, "I paid the price," and it also reminded me of a speech given by Shari Dew in which she points out that the Lord has promised that all He has is ours if we just pay the price.  "You want inspiration?" she asks. "Pay the price: live worthy to receive it.  Want to be of service to your fellow man? Pay the price: listen to and follow the promptings of the Spirit.  Want to feel peace in your life? Pay the price: pray and read the scriptures daily.  Want an eternal family? Pay the price: be worthy to attend the temple and do it." The list could go on and on but it all comes down to the same thing: Are you willing to pay the price?

 The price I paid hit me a lot harder yesterday than the estimated worth of the charitable contribution--though that was pretty hefty too--but I'm glad to have paid that price because I love where I am and what I'm doing. To me it's worth it.
What do you want? To move to Hawaii? To get a better job? To get fit and be healthy? To feel more energetic? To pay off bills? To graduate from college? To feel peace? To gain understanding?

What is the price of it? Time? Energy? Hard-work? Dedication? Sacrifice? Money? Determination? Humility? Patience?

Are you willing to pay the price? Why or why not?

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