February 05, 2017 - #4560 Music and the Spoken Word
Music and the Spoken Word broadcast with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square. February 05, 2017 Broadcast Number 4560.
“‘Give,’ Said the Little Stream”1, 5
Music: William B. Bradbury
Lyrics: Fanny J. Crosby
Arrangement: Ryan Murphy
“Rise Up, Arise” (excerpt), from St. Paul
by Felix Mendelssohn
“The Ash Grove” (organ solo)
Welsh folk song
Arrangement: John Longhurst
“Lead, Kindly Light”2
Music: John B. Dykes
Lyrics: John Henry Newman
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg
“When You Wish upon a Star,”3 from Pinocchio
Music: Leigh Harline
Lyrics: Ned Washington
Arrangement: Michael Davis
“Redeemer of Israel”2, 4, 5
Music: Freeman Lewis
Lyrics: Joseph Swain; adapted by William W. Phelps
Arrangement: Mack Wilberg
1. On the album Teach Me to Walk in the Light.
2. On the album Then Sings My Soul and in the CD set Anniversary Collection.
3. On the album Showtime! and in the CD set Encore Collection.
4. On the album Called to Serve. In the CD set The Missionary Collection.
The Abundant Heart
It takes a special kind of person to find joy in another person’s good fortune. Sadly, it’s far more common to be resentful, bitter, or even offended when something good happens to someone—anyone—other than ourselves. We call this attitude envy, and as an old Danish proverb suggests, “If envy were a fever, all the world would be ill.”1
Why does this happen? Why do we resent the talents and successes of others—even of people we love? Perhaps part of the reason is the world we live in, where the value of things and even people is often determined by comparing them with others. Maybe we secretly worry that blessings and happiness, like the world’s tangible treasures, are in limited supply—that there’s only so much good fortune to go around; therefore, praise and accomplishment for one person must mean less for us. Jeffrey R. Holland put it this way: “As others seem to grow larger in our sight, we think we must therefore be smaller. So, unfortunately, we occasionally act that way.”2 No, nothing good comes of an envious way of life.
By contrast, think how much joy and enjoyment are available to those who overcome the tendency to envy! They enjoy the freedom that comes from contentment. They take pleasure not just in their own good fortune but in every good thing that happens to every other person they know. What’s more, their capacity to love and serve is deeper. They love without measure. Because their hearts are not crowded with envy, they are free to genuinely care about others. Because they are not threatened by another’s success, they are free to help others succeed.
So what is the cure for the widespread fever of envy? Perhaps it begins with gratitude to God for the blessings of life. Nothing produces peace and contentment like a grateful outlook. Humility and generosity of spirit are also great antidotes. As we humbly count our blessings, our hearts can expand to applaud the blessings and accomplishments of others. If envy is characterized by smallness, a miserly approach to life, then love is characterized by abundance of the heart, which grows in the fertile soil of humility, generosity, and service to others.
1. In John R. Stone, comp., The Routledge Book of World Proverbs (2006), 129.
2. “The Other Prodigal,” Ensign, May 2002, 63.