Hundreds of women gathered in the Madsen Recital Hall on Thursday as Stacey Pankratz and Cindi Webb discussed finding joy in the journey now.
Stacey Pankratz focused on a shift in perspective to find joy. She said joy can be like car keys, sometimes right where it should be and other times hard to find.
Pankratz encouraged members of the audience to hold out their fists in front of their faces. She explained that all one can see is one’s fist, but by learning to shift one’s gaze a little to the side, the fist is not gone.
“Your perspective changes, your vision changes, your focus changes,” Pankratz said. “You can see things you couldn’t see when you were focusing on that fist. We go through life, and we have upsets, struggles and hard times, and they are right here in front of our face. Sometimes we just have to change our perspective.”
Concerning perspective, Pankratz explained to listeners that challenges, events and difficulties should not be their sole focus and the only things in their vision. She said there will always be something difficult in every situation, but there is always something beautiful and wonderful.
Comparing the different partakers of the fruit in Lehi’s dream, she explained that when Lehi tasted the fruit, he considered it the “most sweet,” and it was “desirable to make one happy,” but after others endured the midst of darkness and tasted the fruit, they were ashamed because others were mocking them. Those that focused on the Savior and His Atonement had joy beyond measure.
She closed by telling sisters that it is okay that they are busy in the service of their Heavenly Father because He will care for their families. Although they could worry about those that they have left behind, they should press forward and let their hearts rejoice knowing God will watch over them.
Cindi Webb focused on the joy women of God feel as they came together as sisters with love for each other and for the Savior.
She explained the differences between Jezebel and the Zarephath woman who lived close together, yet were different in status.
“Sometimes we may feel as if we are competing with the Jezebels of our day, who on the surface seem to enjoy all that the world has to offer them,” Webb said. “We in turn may feel unnoticed and unappreciated.”
She assured the audience that they are noticed and appreciated by their Heavenly Father, and told a story of her life as a young mother caring for sick children. In this experience she learned that joy is a paradox that does not come until one has walked the road of misery.
Webb shared a story of Diane, a cake decorator, who faced chronic illnesses, lost both of her legs, and was at risk for losing her hands, but overcame countless trials to continue pursuing her passion, all while maintaining a positive attitude and blessing those around her.
“We all must add to our talents, one of them being joy,” she said.