Leman Copely, a Monkey’s Trap, and Me

How I’ve Heard The Voice of The Lord This Week

This week in Come Follow Me, we learn in D&C 49 that Leman Copley is having a hard time letting go of some of his beliefs from being a member of the Shaker religion to align with truth and become a fully functioning member of Christ’s Church. In fact, the Lord says, “that they [the Shakers] desire to know the truth in part, but not all” and that because of that, “they are not right” before the Lord and need to repent.

In classes this week, we likened this situation to a Monkey’s trap – you remember, the coconut (or other such contraption) with food in it and a hole cut big enough for a monkey to get its paw in to grab the food, but not big enough to get its hand out while holding food. So, unless the Monkey is willing to give up the food, he is trapped. We talked about how Leman was trapped by old attitudes and beliefs. We pondered how Modern Day Israel is trapped because some of them won’t let go of actions and attitudes that hold them back from all of the truth and blessings that Heavenly Father intends for them.

But it’s not enough to talk about them, is it? It has to be me. I have to look at my own Monkey’s paw – the trap that I’ve been caught in for years. And as I start my new diet for the ‘um-teenth’ time, I realize that I’ve been doing it all wrong. As I log my food and am tempted to bend the truth about how much I’m logging, or maybe not log the food at all, the Spirit sharply but lovingly (see D&C 121: 42-43) calls back the verse I’d been teaching to my own mind – “they [you] desire to know the truth in part, but not all” and I realize probably for the first time how not being honest with myself has been a Monkey’s trap for me. 

In saying that, you need not think that I’m a totally dishonest person. At least not to others. But to myself, now that is something that I have been pondering for the last few days as I’ve been logging my food on the app – rounding, guesstimating, and not being exact. And as the Spirit put it all together in my mind, I finally broke through another wall. I needed to start praying for the Spiritual gift of more honesty and accountability with myself. For years, I’d been begging for more temperance (i.e., self-control) and would cry at the thought of never being able to have the control I wanted. I thought that I was just a weak, weak woman. Turns out, I may just need to be a more honest one. And somehow, it seems like that is something that I have the ability to do. At least, for the first time, I feel hope in my weakness – that I finally have the tool that will help it to be made strong (Ether 12:27). 

And so, as a final act of not just hearing Him, but also of Hearkening to Him, I have been prompted by the Spirit to turn on the light and publicly write about my own issues with self-honesty so that I can “know the truth [and] chase the darkness” away from me – which, I’m sure not coincidentally, is the next chapter of Come Follow Me for this week (see D&C 50:24-25). At first, the idea of writing this seemed so humiliating. Now, I just feel humbled and thankful for answers that come when we take time to “Hear Him”.

~Laryssa Waldron

(This was originally written for my ward’s Relief Society Newsletter’s “Hear Him” Moment”.)

One thought on “Leman Copely, a Monkey’s Trap, and Me

  1. Thanks for this. I tend to “round up” when I’m guesstimating on my food journal. Years ago when I started weight watches for the first time, I decided to “own it” every single day. The good, the bad all of it. It worked. I need to get back to that. Anyway, you know I love you every day. Keep it up. 🙂 and you know I’m always good for a pep talk any old time.

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