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Great things are brought about and burdens are lightened through the efforts of many hands “anxiously engaged in a good cause.”

- Elder M. Russell Ballard

A conceptual metaphor I have is that we as human beings carry an invisible backpack full of boulders with us at all times. The boulders can be financial stress, chronic pain, childhood trauma, or any other burdens that life throws at us. Everybody’s backpack contains different rock’s but regardless, everyone has one, and it is heavy pressure on the shoulders.

As individuals, we have a few choices… We can throw our rocks at other people. We can compare ourselves to others and judge the size of their rocks. We can take time to sort through the backpack and notice if we are carrying un-needed rocks, or we can use these boulders to make us stronger and more resilient.

Sometimes, if we are really lucky, we might find someone to help carry the load. In the book See No Stranger, Valerie Kaur asks us to wonder “You are a part of me I do not know.” I wonder, how much more peaceful our world would be if we could see what is hiding in each other's metaphorical backpacks. I hope as we collectively heal we can unpack these boulders to build a more peaceful world.

Food For Thought: What am I carrying with me? Who can I ask for help? What are my neighbor’s carrying with them? How can I help take some pressure off their shoulders?


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