Sunday, June 28, 2015

D&C 101:25 -- On Endings and Beginnings

"And also that of element shall melt with fervent heat; and all things shall become new, that my knowledge and glory may dwell upon all the dearth."
Doctrine and Covenants 101:25

The elements melting with fervent heat sounds bad... like end-of-the-world bad, but then it says "and all things shall become new."  I really like the idea that the end *equals* the beginning with God.  In fact, God says many times in the scriptures that he is the beginning and the end, but I never really thought of them as equivalent.  What we think of as endings are also beginnings, and we don't have to be afraid of them.  I think this happens in our lives a lot.  We're used to our lives a certain way, and we have our values and our habits set.  And then God challenges them, to see what we really value, and teach us what is truly important.  And it is hard, because the idea of putting God first *necessarily* means that we have to place him before the things most important to us in the world.  It doesn't work if we only put him before the things that don't really matter that much anyway. :)  And so we run up against the things that we care about the most, or that annoy us the most, or that we want the most... and we're shown all of those things in sharp contrast to what God expects of us.  And when we pull back from the things that we've grown most attached to, it feels like part of us is dying.  Even when we know they are bad habits... even when we know that we're too addicted and that those things are huge triggers in our lives.  It's hard to let go of things that we identify with, that we've allowed to define us or guide our choices for a long time.  Whether those things are relationships or emotions or habits or incorrect beliefs, if they have been priority one for us, it is a death to us, and one that we can mourn or have a hard time not jumping back into.  And I don't want to diminish that feeling, but the idea here I think applies... when we melt those things out of our lives, we become new, and if they are worthy, sometimes they become new as well.  We might be in an unhealthy relationship and putting God before that relationship might help us learn to make it healthy.  Some things are unworthy completely and will be burned away, but even then... an unworthy and false belief can be replaced with a worthy and true one, when we allow God to perform that kind of soul surgery on us.  A bad habit's loss can give us the time and the space for a good habit.  Today, let's remember that with God, endings are always also new beginnings, and if we try to focus on the gain rather than the loss, we'll always be becoming new, and better.

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