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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The Pure Love of Christ

Following our baptism and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, we Mormons are commanded to 'endure to the end,' a phrase that I must confess leaves a bit of a bad taste in my mouth. When I think of 'enduring,' the image I get is that of being tied to a pickup truck and dragged along the gravel road. Just survive; that's the aim.

This is not, I believe, what the phrase intends.

"Stay faithful to the end" or "Overcome all obstacles till the end" or "Grow and develop to the end." These might be better translations. This last one is the one I want to elaborate on, for we are on earth to change and improve ourselves and this means seeking after spiritual gifts.

The Prophet Joseph was once asked about the objectives we have after joining the Church, to which he responded:

"Suppose I am traveling and am hungry, and meet with a man and tell him I am hungry, and he tells me to go yonder, there is a house of entertainment, go and knock, and you must conform to all the rules of the house, or you cannot satisfy your hunger; knock, call for food, sit down and eat; --and I go and knock, and ask for food, and sit down to the table, but do not eat, shall I satisfy my hunger? No. I must eat. The gifts are the food; and the graces of the Spirit are the gifts of the Spirit."
Each of us has natural propensities for certain gifts which may be augmented and expanded under the influence of the Holy Ghost. Some have a knack for learning foreign languages, others have the gift of leadership. There are many gifts, but the greatest of all is the gift of charity -- the capacity to love. This gift is for everyone.

Think of someone you admire -- you look up to. Someone who has been really influential in your life. Chances are, you picked a generous and kind person. These attributes are the ones we appreciate and prize most in others, and we can all apply ourselves to obtain them.

The Book of Mormon prophet, Moroni taught, "...pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true followers of his Son, Jesus Christ..." (Moroni 7:46-48)

I have learned from experience that this prayer does not cause the proverbial wand to wave. As with all things we learn on earth we take it step by step and this prayer is a first, but necessary step. Take it, and you will begin to see the Lord's hand in changing your heart.


ProfXM said...

I don't get it... What are you saying in this post? Are you pushing love, charity, or something else?

Beetle said...

I think what Thaddeus was trying to say is that if we endure to the end without love in our lives it would be less fulfilling than if we grow and progress while trying to love everyone as Christ loves.