Picture in your mind all of the beautiful & different shapes a diamond can be cut into. If you had to quickly determine which shape you would choose if you got to be known at the end of your life as one of these shapes, which would you pick? I would like to point out that all of these shaped diamonds are beautiful and priceless and have each had to go through a refining process.
Now some questions to consider, what if all of the diamonds in the world could only be cut one way – like round? Wouldn’t it be boring? I think you can see where I’m going with this. One of the phrases we use in life about potential is “she’s a diamond in the rough” – which would literally mean a piece of coal, but figuratively speaking mean someone who is going to become something amazing. So have you decided shape do you think you would be? How do you express yourself in your own unique way? You may have some things in common with your friends, but I am confident there are also just as many differences. Some of us are small, some of us are tall; some may prefer brown skirts, others of us like black; Some have been blessed with a tender and soft heart, others with bold and unwavering devotion; Some of us are spunky and know how to get to work and get ‘er done. Others have the gift to make things light and fun. Which shape do you like to sparkle in? For each of us there is a unique way that we will feel most capable of “coming unto to Christ and being perfected in Him”. Let’s not fight against those capabilities but magnify them & embrace them.
And on the other hand let us appreciate the other people we admire for their unique examples and then use this understanding as we work together to perfect ourselves. We don’t all have to be the same. Each of us is enough being uniquely who we are inside & out– we don’t all have to be the same “shape”. Isn’t that refreshing? We can each ultimately become the diamonds we are meant to be as we handle the pressures of life, but in the end our shapes will be specific to whom we have always been, even before the world began.
!A word of caution! How many of you know what a cubic Zirconia is? Cubic zirconia—commonly called CZ—is widely used as an inexpensive diamond substitute. I found this quote from Macys.com when researching about diamonds: “There’s no need to shell out the big bucks for a diamond dazzler. Cubic zirconia jewelry offers a unique eye-catching shimmer without having to break the bank.” To the untrained eye, a brand new CZ looks like a real diamond. This is why many people substitute them for the real thing. The two substances may look similar—especially when new and clean—but they’re not! Unlike diamonds, CZ’s scratch and become dull and lifeless over the long term. They don’t sparkle like real diamonds either once you’ve worn them for a bit. The world would have us believe that superficial things are real and that we can sacrifice quality. Please DON’T BELIEVE it. The world is the big and spacious building we read about in Nephi’s account of the tree of life. I think sometimes when we pick up a magazine and see the flawless faces of the models it’s hard not to believe the little lies that Satan places in our thoughts, that we are ugly and not good enough. That we will never be that good. What we don’t see is the unhealthy habits or the air brushing techniques that accomplished the flawless look. It is hard to see the picture for what it truly is. It looks like a diamond, but it’s really only a CZ right? Would could use this example with countless other things.
Let’s put all of these ideas together. A CZ would probably go through the motions of going to church and taking the sacrament, but not ever develop a deep rooted testimony. A flawless and uniquely shaped diamond in the rough, might look like this depending on our strengths. Some may show love to God by reading their scriptures diligently, others will want to do something like go on a hike and feel reverence for the creations that God has given to us to enjoy. A few others of us will find it easy to be a cheerleader with encouraging words when others feel down; some of you will find it easy to reach out and give someone a hug or make them a favorite treat to demonstrate how much you care. As we embrace that we truly are a diamond in the rough, it is easier to stay focused on keeping the two greatest commandments to love God and love one another. Our brother, Jesus Christ’s, perfect example of humble confidence is one for each of us to strive for no matter what cut we are. He had the humility necessary to glory in “His father”, and then through that found the confidence He needed to heal lepers, feed the hungry, give the blind their sight, walk on water, teach forgiveness, and help the homeless. He is there for us, waiting with arms open wide. He will mold our lives and change our willing hearts. He will safely guide us and gently lead us through our “roughness” until we are ready to stand before Heavenly Father at the end our days as a uniquely shaped & sparkling diamond. I know this is true for each of us!