Tuesday, August 7, 2012

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degree of unrighteousness, behold, the heavens withdraw themselves; the Spirit of the Lord is grieved; and when it is withdrawn, Amen to the priesthood or the authority of that man."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 struck me today in a different way than I have read it before.  Today, the part that jumped out at me is "the powers of heaven cannot be controlled nor handled only upon the principles of righteousness."  ... I love the idea of a power that simply cannot be used for evil.  If you try, you lose it.  There is no dark side of the force. :)
... Not saying that temptations are nothing, or that evil isn't a tangible force sometimes... but only that God's power, which is the greatest of all, can only be used in righteousness.  If people want to be evil, then they're tapping into something lesser, by definition.  And if we've allowed ourselves to be in the power of evil, that God can always still deliver us, because his power is always greater.  What a massive deception it is to imagine God and Satan as equals in strength or dominion, or to imagine that the eventual resolution to the struggle is at all in question.  The end is known.  We're not here to choose sides.  We're only here to get a body, and to learn to choose between good and evil.  And God protects us from evil that is too great... he never asks us to do anything without giving us the power to do it.  So, not only is the end certain, but we as individuals... every single one of us... have the power to get to the happy ending.  Nothing can stop us, except ourselves.  We can choose to give up when faced with hardships.  We can decide that we prefer evil to good... although that would be insane, of course.  We get to make those choices.  But what we cannot do is blame anyone else for our failure to reach our potential.  That's on us.  We have everything that we need.  All of us do.
Today, let's tap into the good side... the only side... of the force.  Let's talk to God, and listen to him as well... and find our way to that happy ending.

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