Put The Castle In First
My daughter Kenzington has a darling little Disney play set. It has a tiny little version of many of the rides you would find at Disneyland (including teacups!) and lots of teeny tiny Disney Characters. The set also has an amazing castle. Kenz stores this set in a snap-top box that is just the right size. In fact, it is so perfectly sized for the set that if the pieces don't go in just right, the lid won't go on and close. She often attempts to put the set away and ends up very frustrated! Things just aren't working! She can't get it all in and get the lid on. Then I hear myself saying to her,
"Put the castle in first, the rest will fit in around it."
I'm guessing you already know what I'm getting at here; how this all relates to life, but perhaps, if only for myself, I need to clap it all out and finish drawing the analogy. Bear with me now!
We came to this earth for a number of reasons:
To get a body
To be tested
To have children
To fulfill a purpose
The overall goal of life is to live worthy to return to our Father in Heaven.
I think that SOMETIMES we get mixed up and mistake real life for a real life version of the GAME of LIFE. You know- the board game where the overall goal is:
to zip through school
to get the best job
to fill your car with family
to fill your bank account!
to sell the skunk farm!
to retire in Millionaire Estates or Countryside Acres.
REAL LIFE has to include many of those things, (hopefully not the skunk farm!) which is partly why it's easy to get mixed up about what REAL LIFE'S overall goal is. We spend so much time trying to make the journey through life better that we forget to move toward the REAL overall goal. In fact, many times we've forgotten what the REAL overall goal is and we're not going anywhere at all, just winding back and forth like on the board-game.
So here it comes- the secret to doing it right:
PUT THE CASTLE IN FIRST!
The Castle is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is attending ALL of our church meetings. It is repenting when we mess up. It is studying our scriptures and praying. It is having family home evening. It is attending the temple. It is serving other people. It is reminding others, some who might not even know about the castle, to put it in first.
And guess what?
When we put it in first, all the other little WORTH-WHILE things that are also a part of this experience we call LIFE fit in around it.