Saturday, June 8, 2013

Summer Book of Mormon Challenge - Day 3

I have to say that the first part of today's reading, 1 Nephi 7-10 or pages 12-19, expresses many of the feelings I wish I could express to some of the people I love.

"... being grieved for the hardness of their heart."

"... how is it that ye are so hard in your hearts, and so blind in your minds...?"

"How is it that ye have not hearkened unto the word of the Lord?"

"How is it that ye have forgotten..." all that you have been taught as a child and "the great things the Lord hath done for us?"

"... how is it that ye have forgotten that the Lord is able to do all things according to his will?"

"... LET US BE FAITHFUL..."!

I wish that I could "frankly forgive" others.

I wish that I could remember all the words I find in the scriptures in the heat of the moment.

I wish that remember to "give thanks" even for the adversity in my life... even for the people that challenge me.

But the next chapters remind me of WHY I want to say these thing... Why I hope for something better... Why I want my loved ones to change.

Like the patriarch-prophet Lehi who is desirous that his family partake of the fruit of the tree of life, I want my family to do the same. He experiences the sweetness and joy of the fruit of the tree of life and he wants his loved ones to “partake of the fruit” and experience the same happiness that it brought him.  I want that for my family!  

I love the Book of Mormon! Every time that I read it I feel the same way that Lehi describes the fruit from the tree of life: “desirable to make one happy”, “sweet”, “filled my soul with exceedingly great joy”, “desirable”. The Book of Mormon brings us all to The Tree of Life–Jesus Christ. HE is what makes the book a source of happiness, sweetness, joy, etc. My desire is that my family and friends will “come… and partake of the fruit which is desirable above all other fruit”. By making the Book of Mormon a regular part of daily scripture study they can more fully come unto Christ, the source of all goodness.

So, what I hope for is that the people I love, my family, my friends, my students, will catch "hold of the end of the iron rod... " and that they will "... press their way forward, continually holding fast to the iron rod..." until they all arrive at the tree to feast.

I know I can't force people to heaven.  I know they must make their own choices.  But I must have hope that "the Lord knoweth all things from the beginning..."  He loves my loved ones, even more than I love them.  Therefore, I know that "... he prepareth a way to accomplish all his works among the children of men... "  ... even those I love... he WILL reach them one day.  Although they may be scattered, they will be gathered together again.

I have not seen visions.  But I agree with Nephi.  I desire that I might see, and hear, and know of the things of the Spirit.  I may not have seen a vision, but my testimony continues grow.  For this I am grateful.

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