Monday, January 24, 2011

Doctrine and Covenants 121:34-37

"Behold, there are many called, but few are chosen. And why are they not chosen?
Because their hearts are set so much upon the things of this world, and aspire to the honors of men, that they do not learn this one lesson—
That the rights of the priesthood are inseparably connected with the powers of heaven, and that the powers of heaven cannot be controlled nor handled only upon the principles of righteousness.
That they may be conferred upon us, it is true; but when we undertake to cover our sins, or to gratify our pride, our vain ambition, or to exercise control or dominion or compulsion upon the souls of the children of men, in any degree of unrighteousness, behold, the heavens withdraw themselves; the Spirit of the Lord is grieved; and when it is withdrawn, Amen to the priesthood or the authority of that man."
Doctrine and Covenants 121:34-37

This verse is talking about priesthood, but I actually think that it applies to any kind of authority that we might have over another person. True that being unrighteous doesn't automatically cause us to lose our job, our position at church, to get divorced, or become disowned by our family. However, even if we still have the title or the relationship when acting unrighteously, we've lost sight of the true goal. We might be able to still bully someone into something, but we will be ineffective where it counts. NO ONE can be controlled or handled, except through the principles of righteousness. I think Matthew 25:40 emphasizes this as well. Inasmuch as we interact with anyone, we've interacted with Christ... our actions on earth are inseparably tied to our connection with heaven. And it works the other way too. Even though we might have less influence on people who have authority over us, those interactions affect our connection to heaven as well. God's Spirit is grieved if we treat people badly. Today... let's try to learn the "one lesson" in these verses. We can't accomplish anything good without God. If we've lost that Spirit, let's repent and pray and plead and do whatever it takes to get it back... because until we have it back, we're not going to be good family members, church members, good teachers, good bosses, or good anything. We're going to be ineffective leaders, and probably also ineffective followers and onlookers. :) Sometimes even breathing in and out effectively requires God's help... so let's stop right now, and make sure we have it.

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