My apologies for not posting last week. I left for New York last Sunday and had too many things to finish before leaving. Anyway I would like to reflect upon some experiences that I had while in New York.
In the August Ensign there is an article by President David O. McKay called "Unspotted from the World." In it he talks about how we are a peculiar people. He says, "as the Church of God we must 'dwell apart'." This was reminding me a great deal of what it was like to be with a group of young women (ages 17-26) this past week in New York City. I went there for a dance convention and was the only one in the group that was LDS. Many of the girls, both underaged and legal, spoke a lot about their favorite alcholic beverages and their fake IDs. It was a very awkward situation for me because they sat up late discussing whether rum or vodka was better, and here I was in the corner of the hotel room reading the Book of Mormon. Then on the last night I was there we went to a fancy theatre to see a dance show and everyone was dressed really fancy. I was the only one wearing a dress that had sleeves and went below my knees. Many people were staring at me throughout the evening. I am sure to them they must have thought that I looked so very "peculiar" but to me they were the ones that looked a little "peculiar." I am so grateful for the standards that we have as members of the LDS faith and I encourage you all to be proud of those standards which we have. Although I certainly felt like an outcast, and I knew that people were staring at me, I felt clean and pure inside and I knew that I was setting a good example for others to see what our church teaches.
It may not always be easy to do the right thing, especially when the people closest to you are following the ways of the world, but I can promise you that it is worth it. Remember this:
What is popular is not always right, and what is right is not always popular.
Our goal as members of the LDS religion is to set an example for the world. Never let your standards take a backseat because you are nervous about what others may think of you. You don't have to drink with your co-workers to be recognized by your boss. You don't have to wear revealing attire to develop your talents of dancing. You don't have to swear because everyone around you is doing it. Stand up and be "a peculiar people." You will be blessed both now and in the eternities for following the standards and commandments that God has given us!