This is a really amazing talk that teaches the importance of not being like Laman and Lemuel. I remember grinning when this wonderful apostle spoke at general conference. I will never hear the words "childish whining" without thinking of this dear apostle of God.:) In this awesome talk Elder Renlund said, The difference made by our proximity to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ is illustrated in the Book of Mormon in the stark contrast between Nephi and his older brothers Laman and Lemuel: Nephi had “great desires to know of the mysteries of God, wherefore, [he] did cry unto the Lord,” and his heart was softened. On the other hand, Laman and Lemuel were distant from God—they did not know Him. Nephi accepted challenging assignments without complaint, but Laman and Lemuel “did murmur in many things.” Murmuring is the scriptural equivalent of childish whining. The scripture records that “they did murmur because they knew not the dealings of that God who had created them.” Nephi’s closeness to God enabled him to recognize and appreciate God’s “tender mercies.” In contrast, when Laman and Lemuel saw Nephi receiving blessings, they “were wroth with him because they understood not the dealings of the Lord.” Laman and Lemuel saw the blessings that they received as their due and petulantly assumed that they should have more. They seemed to view Nephi’s blessings as “wrongs” committed against them. This is the scriptural equivalent of disgruntled entitlement. Nephi exercised faith in God to accomplish what he was asked to do. In contrast, Laman and Lemuel, “being hard in their hearts, … did not look unto the Lord as they ought.” They seemed to feel that the Lord was obligated to provide answers to questions that they had not posed. “The Lord maketh no such thing known unto us,” they said, but they did not even make the effort to ask. This is the scriptural equivalent of derisive skepticism. Because they were distant from the Savior, Laman and Lemuel murmured, became contentious, and were faithless."
After listening to this talk and pondering my own feelings I wrote this poem. Like any writer you want to see the Laman and Lemuel like characters change. So in this poem the whiner gets up and moves forward, becoming happy and alive in Christ. I hope each of us will do the same. And perhaps we can be the hero that helps to lift someone else who is whining....;)
As I stood afar off my heart filled with pain,
I felt alone and weary each footstep was a strain.
The sound of my murmur echoed loudly, it's unfair,
The melody of my suffering was the song that filled the air.
Others, seemed to flee from me as I sang of the wrongs I knew,
Their look of confusion and sorrow, only made me feel more blue.
I deserve more I thought, this isn't fair at all,
As I beheld life’s inequity my walk became a crawl.
Clearly as I languished aid should be sent to me,
I halted and laid down, there was no point you see.
I refused to move forward until someone showed me why,
My song of torment and suffering was a fervent steady cry.
As I lay on the path a stranger came and knelt by me,
He said you should look on the bright side, things will get better you’ll see.
Lifting me he smiled and pointed to the sky,
It's a beautiful day for walking, why don't we give it a try.
He helped as we walked, and he spoke to me of prayer,
He testified of our Savior and all that He does share.
My footsteps felt much lighter as my new friend lead the way,
I was strengthened by his kindness, by the words he chose to say.
The wrongs that had plagued me diminished as I journeyed on,
The melody of hope was now becoming beautiful, clear and strong.
My steps became cheerful as I began to sing of love,
Of blessings and possibility sent from God above.
As I sang of my Savior I saw a better day,
I now skipped with my new friend as we headed on our way.
The closer I came to the light ahead, the more hope burned in me,
My song of love now filled the air with a promise of what could be!
I glanced with a smile at the friend that God sent to me,
With tears of gratitude I said, dear friend my Savior lives in thee.
Written by Michelene Glasson