Wednesday, May 13, 2015

3 Nephi 28:10 -- On Joy and That One Guy

"And for this cause ye shall have fulness of joy; and ye shall sit down in the kingdom of my Father; yea, your joy shall be full, even as the Father hath given me fulness of joy; and ye shall be even as I am, and I am even as the Father; and the Father and I are one;"
3 Nephi 28:10

This is something that Christ said to the three Nephites who requested to remain on the Earth until the Second Coming, bringing people to the gospel.  A few verses earlier it mentions that this is the same thing that John the Beloved asked for, so theoretically we have at least four people who are over 2000 years old, still on a mission for God.  That's a long time to be on a mission... but you know, how could "fulness of joy" ever get old? :)  Even cooler, for these guys, their bodies were changed, both to allow them to live that long, but also it says "that they might not suffer pain nor sorrow save it were for the sins of the world."  Nice bonus.
I wonder if this is the ideal for all of us, to work towards this fullness of joy.  Not necessarily that we are all needed to stay on the earth on missions for thousands of years, but the ideal of caring about our fellow beings enough that we think that would be a valuable option for our lives.  I think we too often get insular, just focusing on the area and people we know and not wanting to branch out. It makes sense in some ways.  We want to limit stress, not get overwhelmed, etc.  But in order to get to where John and the three Nephites were when they desired these missions, wanting to bring generations of people to Christ, I think we might want to open up a little, and learn to love different kinds of people, who are *all* our brothers and sisters.  Even that one guy that gets on our nerves. :)
Today, let's work towards this fullness of joy by focusing on trying to love that one guy.  Maybe get to know him more, or do something nice for him.  And hey, if we master being able to love that one guy, maybe we can branch out more.  Foreigners.  Used-Car Salesmen.  Lawyers.  ...Anyone. :)  Maybe we'll learn that they (we) all have something to offer, and have a deep, eternal value.  Maybe we'll realize how absolutely worth it it would be to spend thousands of years on a mission to help as many people as possible know Christ.  And I think that doing the experiment with that one guy today will open us up to more joy, and as we go further and further, loving more and more people, someday we'll hit that fullness level, and never be empty again. :)

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