Friday, January 31, 2014

Individual Worth #1 - Personal Progress

 The assigned scriptures for this value experience were Psalm 8:4-6, Jeremiah 1:5, John 13:34, D&C 8:10, Abraham 3:22-23, and then Joseph Smith history 1:1-20.  I enjoyed reading the Psalm that remindes us that we are little lower than the angels and crowned with Glory and Honor. The other scriptures are ones I have heard many times. Nothing seemed to strike me strongly until I read the Joseph Smith story. I know the story. I have taught the story many times but for some reason this time, with Individual worth in mind, it had new meaning.

Joseph Smith was just a 14 year old boy from a poor family in a rural town. He wasn't anything special in the eyes of the world. He had a question. He didn't know the answer to it but tried in many ways to find that answer. He read in the scriptures (James 1:5) that if any man lacks wisdom, let him ask of God.  For some reason that phrase "any man" stood out to me this time. Perhaps it was because I had just been preparing my Sunday School lesson which had a video about William Tyndale and the sacrifices he made to bring the bible to the people in their own language. He wanted the scriptures to be in the hands of the people and in the language they could understand so they could know the words of the lord for them. He didn't want the bishops or priest of the church to hold that monopoly on the words of God. So when I read that verse in James again it struck me that God isn't a respector of persons. He doesn't place any of this children is lower esteem. He loves all of us wether we are tall or short, fat or thin, quick witted or slow, introverted or extroverted. We are all worthy of talking to him. We are all welcome and invited to talk to him. We are all his children and he loves us. Any man who wants to ask something of or talk to God can.

Another thought I had as I read through that passage in Joseph Smith's history was that God knew Joseph's potential and what was in his heart.  The world saw him as just another son of a struggling farmer, another under educated boy, or just another number to add to their congregation. But God knew what Joseph had inside and that he could do a lot of good and withstand a lot of trials. He wasn't just another but he was special and important.

I know Heavenly Father knows me individualy. He listens to my heart felt prayers. He wants me to pray and talk with him. He wants to hear about my concerns and struggles. He also wants to share my happiness and joy as well. He will help me recognize my talents and gifts and guide me to what my Divine Mission may be.

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