Sunday, June 26, 2016

Ether 12:11-12 -- On Interactive Miracles

"Wherefore, by faith was the law of Moses given. But in the gift of his Son hath God prepared a more excellent way; and it is by faith that it hath been fulfilled.
For if there be no faith among the children of men God can do no miracle among them; wherefore, he showed not himself until after their faith."
Ether 12:11-12

This is an interesting discussion of faith.  I think that I've mostly thought of Faith as a one-way thing.  If I believe and trust in God enough, and act on that, then that's Faith.  But in reading this we learn that faith is more than one way.  It's our faith in God, for sure, but it is a two-way thing, that allows him to act in our lives as well.  The age-old agreement: "And ye shall be my people, and I will be your God" (Jeremiah 30:22).

I think that we forget how much of a limit God has placed on himself with the whole free agency thing.  Allowing us freedom sets self-imposed boundaries on how God can interact with us.  All of our interactions have to be agreements... which also means that we have to make choices and take actions in order to receive blessings.  Our freedom necessitates these rules.

Sometimes we think that freedom isn't all it is cracked up to be, and we'd rather have safety, or security, or something else.  But let's remember that with freedom come greater possibilities than could ever possibly come for us were we forced to live a certain way.  A person in prison might like the consistent meals, but definitely doesn't have the same options that someone outside prison has.

In a weird way, faith is like a permission slip, or maybe a deposit on a bus trip.  God has all of these cool plans waiting for us, but if we don't read the plan, figure out our part in it, and sign on the dotted line, we can't participate... and he can't take us anywhere.  We might sit back and think, well, I'm not really sure if the trip is going to happen.  The bus might not show up, people might not want to go... the teacher might flake out, and on and on.  In that sense, faith is belief and trust... that the teacher knows what he is doing, that the trip will actually happen, but it also goes beyond that.  We have to be willing to participate.  We have to show up, and do our part.  We have to show that we're all in by bringing in the slip or putting down the money.

In a figurative way, God can show us the universe, as long as we make that commitment to him that we're willing to go, and we show him that commitment through our actions.  And if we do sign up and pay the price of the trip, we can go with God, and he can show us more than we ever expected.  I love the thought that people participated in Christ's coming in that way... through having faith that it would happen, and committing to and living the gospel.  And we can participate now in his second coming, in the same way.  Today, let's examine our commitment and our faith... and let's step it up a little.  Miracles happen interactively.  Let's do our part. :)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Total Pageviews