At 6:00 any given morning, you could hear us all in our various rooms practicing our various instruments. Later both my sister and I became singers and were both in the A Cappella Choir at BYU — the premier audition choir of that time — and I majored (for a time) in musical theater. (My sister and her husband are currently members of the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir.)
I’m not sure how “natural” these talents were, but they were certainly developed with hundreds of hours of practice and hard work.
In spite of the whining and moaning and groaning my mother put up with, this is something I am incredibly grateful for. Music has blessed my life again and again. And now, as that love of performing arts is passed down to some of my children, it blesses a second generation, as it should.
Our utmost responsibility is to identify and nurture our natural gifts and talents.
Unfortunately, though, often when we think of talents — “natural” or not — we think of singing, dancing, acting, or playing an instrument. Or maybe we think of athletic prowess. But often the most useful and important talents are overlooked or unrecognized.
What are your natural talents? Consider these:
- Listening to others
- Making others feel comfortable
- Seeing what needs to be done
- Finding solutions to difficult problems
- Remaining calm in a crisis
- Forgiving and not carrying a grudge
- Influencing others
- Seeing things from an unusual perspective
- Making others feel loved and included
- Picking up new skills easily
- Being generally happy
- Making others laugh
- Looking for the best in others or in situations
Talents exist in all areas of life and aren’t limited to the stage or court.
We all have gifts. I believe that is a blessing God has specifically offered to each of us. And any gift can be used for good or ill. When we find what our gifts are, it is imperative that we find how we can use those talents to bless and lift others, to do good, and to make the world a better place.
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