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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The value of work

"Work is honorable. Developing the capacity to work will help you contribute to the world in which you live. It will bring you an increased sense of self-worth. It will bless you and your family, both now and in the future."    ~~For the Strength of Youth~~
    I am grateful for all the jobs I've had. Each one has contributed in some way to my learning and growth. For the last several months, I have been privileged to work as a custodian in the Provo temple. It's a wonderful job, probably my favorite so far. I'm really going to miss it when it's time to leave at the end of this month.
     I love working with people who are kind and uplifting. Obviously, no one's perfect, myself definitely included, but it's good to work with people who share my goals. Since we work at night, we often interact when we're all tired and not at our best, and that's good for me, too. It gives me a chance to practice patience. A lot of the time I'm still very bad at that, so I need the practice. I love my coworkers. They are wonderful and I count them as good friends.
     The other thing I love about working at the temple is the peace I can feel there. It's different from going and worshiping there, but while I work I get the chance to think about what the temple means to me and the things I can do better in my life. Cleaning helps me to think and reflect on my life. When I was working as a custodian at BYU before my mission, the time I spent pushing a recycling cart helped me prepare for those 18 months of my life. Now, the time I spend cleaning the temple helps me think about what I'm going to do with the rest of my life.

     This job has been my favorite so far. Still, there is a time and a season for everything, and I have decided that it's about time for me to move on. I've made the decision to resign at the end of June. As much as I love my job, it'll be good to have a break before I start my Masters program in August. I want to dedicate more time to my writing, and not working nights will help with that. As a grad student, I'll be able to teach beginning Spanish at BYU. It'll be a busy time, I expect, but it will be good for me.
     Having a job helps me practice patience, develop discipline and learn new skills. When I view my work as a learning experience, it becomes an opportunity, not an unpleasant necessity. I truly value the opportunity to work. It really does help my sense of self-worth.

I took this photo of the temple while I was in the Missionary Training Center in July 2011,  preparing to go to Argentina. Every temple is a sacred place, but the Provo Temple will always be extra-special to me,
because of the time I've spent there, both as a custodian and as a patron. I love it.