Friday, March 17, 2017

2 Nephi 9:31 -- On Narrow Paths and Capes and Cake

"O then, my beloved brethren, come unto the Lord, the Holy One. Remember that his paths are righteous. Behold, the way for man is narrow, but it lieth in a straight course before him, and the keeper of the gate is the Holy One of Israel; and he employeth no servant there; and there is none other way save it be by the gate; for he cannot be deceived, for the Lord God is his name."
2 Nephi 9:31

The idea of walking a narrow path is often one that we rebel against.  We tend to want to wander a little (or a lot) and go our own way.  At least until we run into something that we can't do because we haven't been following that path.  And I think that is where the problem lies.  We think that we are becoming more free by going our own way... wandering around, seeing what we like, getting sidetracked and enjoying the scenery.  But then, somewhere in the middle of an empty field, we realize, wow... I really want what God offers, and then we turn around and look for the way back, and we feel lost, and we realize that we can't just skip ahead to the end, because we have to learn the stuff in the middle.  Following God's path is what makes us free to continue, and to get the blessings that he promises.  He isn't asking us to walk a narrow path in order to make the world less fun, but because he knows that this is the path that offers us the most freedom and joy.

The way I think of it is like a superhero academy.  God knows that we all have superpowers and that we need some basic training to make us safe around other people, and then we can take more advanced classes to develop our powers, and then if we master that, we can get into the really cool stuff with the saving the world and the capes and the graduation cake and stuff. :)  Except we go in the first day and hear we are superheroes and so we go flying off somewhere to rescue someone and instead put a dent in a skyscraper and get face-planted by an arch-villain, at which point we give up and decide to join a circus or something.  When chapter 5 rolls around we see someone in need of saving, and we realize we just can't save them, because we don't know how, and we'll harm them if we try.  We re-discover our true natures, and realize that we really do need superhero school, but we still have to go back and learn how to be safe around others before we can progress.

God promises us so much, and we *can* be superheroes, and learn to save others and eventually the world... but it *requires* dedication and training.  It's a narrow path that few walk, but it *is* the way to the best, most heroic, happiest, most peaceful, coolest, and most exciting life possible. (And yes, it can be peaceful and exciting at the same time.)  Today, let's walk the narrow path.  Let's be the people that we can be with God's help, and stay the course so we can get the capes and the cake. :)

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