Thursday, December 15, 2016

We must pass through every ordeal appointed for intelligent beings

I don't know about you, but I would not want a heart surgeon to operate on me, that has not been thoroughly tested through experience with that particular procedure. And as a matter fact, I would want that surgeon to be well experienced in all procedures dealing with the heart, in case something else were to go wrong during the procedure. This same concept applies to practically all areas of life as well. We wouldn't want to take marital advice from someone who had been divorced five times, or financial advice from someone that couldn't get their own finances under control.

Similarly, the heart surgeon that never learns to master the procedures, will never be able to enjoy the fruits of that labor. The individual who never learns the art of a happy marriage, will never be able to enjoy the fruits of a happy marriage, etc...

This applies to things of a spiritual nature as well. Isaiah 28:10 teaches:

For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:

The key is progression. If we take one step forward or upward on a ladder and then take one step backward or downward, then no progress has occurred, and we will never reach the top. We must build upon our progress, thus taking more steps upward then downward. For example, the faith that Moses possessed, when the Lord used him to part the Red Sea, was the culminating product of many forward and upward steps on the ladder of faith. Those steps were of all kinds and to just list a few; steps of trials, steps of hardship, steps of sickness, steps of mighty prayer, steps of the loss of loved ones, steps of great fasting, etc... Moses became a great faith "surgeon" because he mastered all the "procedures" of faith, one by one. Oh how sweet is his fruit.

Now, we can enjoy the words of President Brigham Young, quoted by John A. Widtsoe:

All intelligent beings who are crowned with crowns of glory, immortality, and eternal lives must pass through every ordeal appointed for intelligent beings to pass through, to gain their glory and exaltation. Every calamity that can come upon mortal beings will be suffered to come upon the few, to prepare them to enjoy the presence of the Lord. If we obtain the glory that Abraham obtained, we must do so by the same means that he did. If we are ever prepared to enjoy the society of Enoch, Noah, Melchizedek, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, or of their faithful children, and of the faithful Prophets and Apostles, we must pass through the same experience, and gain the knowledge, intelligence, and endowments that will prepare us to enter into the celestial kingdom of our Father and God. (Sermon in Provo, Utah, Aug. 26, 1860, JD8:150) DBY:345


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