Monday, June 10, 2019

Ezekiel 13:22 -- On Happy Endings

"Because with lies ye have made the heart of the righteous sad, whom I have not made sad; and strengthened the hands of the wicked, that he should not return from his wicked way, by promising him life:"
Ezekiel 13:22

This is an interesting verse because I think it shows the problems inherent in even the simple deceptions that we tell ourselves, trying to believe that little sins are okay, or that "every man fare[s] in this life according to the management of the creature; therefore every man prosper[s] according to his genius, and that every man conquer[s] according to his strength; and whatsoever a man [does] [is] no crime" (Alma 30:17).  Even the little deceptions or the one that make sense in a lot of ways, but are just a little twisted to leave God out of the equation, those are harmful to us... and to everyone.

It sort of reminds me of a lecture I attended at BYU many years ago by a popular author.  One of the comments that she made kind of floored me because I hadn't really considered it before.  I won't get what she said exactly right because it was so long ago, but she basically said that writing endings where evil wins is a deception, and that it leads people to believe that evil is stronger than it is... that it has a chance against God, when it doesn't.  Happy endings are essential if you are trying to be honest with your audience.  ... And I mean, she writes fiction.  The idea that letting evil win, even in a made-up story, is a bad thing has stuck with me, and I think that I have grown to believe it more and more.  Evil winning and sad endings *isn't* "reality" the way we so often say it is.  It's just ending the story in a sad chapter and never really getting to the ending.

God doesn't write sad stories... and we are ALL in his story.  He wants us to understand that there are real consequences to our wickedness, so that we can improve and be happier.  If we stick with the plot and keep doing the work to progress in the story, we are on our way to a happy ending.  But when people say, oh, no... Satan's is a better author because he is more edgy and depressing... well, we need to be warned about that, and really think about whether that is what we are looking for in life.  Christ is the only way to the happy endings, and through him, all of our endings will be exactly as happy as possible, based on our own choices and who we desire to become.

Today, let's make sure that we aren't telling ourselves or each other lies that make sinning more palatable, or that make following Christ's path seem like a sad thing.  Let's trust in God's happy ending, and work with him to be the heroes that we were meant to be. :)

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