Friday, March 4, 2016

A Light That Cannot Be Hidden

In light of the political climate, and upcoming elections, I feel there is a lot of negativity and despair filling social media. Some people are resorting to criticism and callousness while others become hopeless and despondent. I have found myself falling victim to the negativity too at times. It seems easy to be consumed with worry about the future and wonder what kind of legacy is being left behind for our children. If we don't think about the future for our children, then who will? But maybe we should be just as concerned (or more so) about the legacy of faith and hope that we are passing on to our children. We must show them that hope is possible in the face of trouble and that faith is our guiding principle, not fear.

I am not saying that we ignore what is going on around us. I do, however, believe that our children are watching the way that we respond to this heated topic. Healthy, intelligent debate is good. It shows that we are involved and that we are concerned. But when contention or complaint is our tone, we leave the space of faith and hope and enter into the enemy's territory. If there is no solution or the situation can't be changed, then does complaining about it, blaming others or joining the voice of negativity help the problem? It might make you feel better for a time, but in the end, no one is better for it.
Say and do something positive that will help the situation; it doesn't take any brains to complain. Robert A. Cook
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"Say and do something positive that will help the situation; it doesn't take any brains to complain." Robert A. Cook
It's true that there is not a lot we can do to change the political climate right now. But there's a lot we can do to change the climate on Facebook and the climate of our homes and interactions with others when we speak of these things. We don't have to preach the gospel of despair. As Christians we should be preaching the opposite. We have access to a type of peace that is independent and operates separately than world peace.

Elder Quentin L. Cook said,
"We earnestly hope and pray for universal peace, but it is as individuals and families that we achieve the kind of peace that is the promised reward of righteousness. This peace is a promised gift of the Savior’s mission and atoning sacrifice."
As the world gets darker and the future seems more bleak, there is a light that grows brighter and brighter. That light is the light of the gospel and the hope it brings. We don't need to join the voices of pessism and despair.
"For many years now...we have witnessed increasing expressions of a profound sense of what has come to be called existential despair, a hopelessness beyond hope. We are custodians and possessors of a gospel of bright and realistic hope. It is a hope for which many hunger more deeply than we can possibly imagine." Neal A. Maxwell
This statement by Harold B. Lee bolsters my faith and hope in times like these:
Men may fail in this country, earthquakes may come, seas may heave beyond their bounds, there may be great drought, disaster, and hardship, but this nation, founded on principles laid down by men whom God raised up, will never fail. This is the cradle of humanity, where life on this earth began in the Garden of Eden. This is the place of the new Jerusalem. This is the place that the Lord said is favored above all other nations in all the world. This is the place where the Savior will come to His temple. This is the favored land in all the world. Yes, I repeat, men may fail, but this nation won’t fail. I have faith in America; you and I must have faith in America, if we understand the teachings of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We are living in a day when we must pay heed to these challenges.
I plead with you not to preach pessimism. Preach that this is the greatest country in all the world. This is the favored land. This is the land of our forefathers. It is the nation that will stand despite whatever trials or crises it may yet have to pass through.

For a beautiful talk about the power of hope in a despairing world, watch Neal A. Maxwell's "Shine As Lights" conference talk:


Fatherly Advice Dad said...

Great thoughts. Wonderfully written.

Bogdan Yanov said...

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