Wednesday, February 16, 2011

   I have been thinking a lot recently about the early pioneers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. What incredible love they had for what they believed in. I often think to myself do I have the same desire as they did? As we know, the Saints were driven from their homes and from their lives countless times, due to persecution from mobs and unbelievers which fortunately has ended today. They were often left with no option but to grab a covered wagon and head somewhere else with no real knowledge of what was to come. But with unexplainable persistence and faith the saints held strong to their beliefs and kept moving forward not backwards. 

What was it that motivated the saints? I am not going to talk about beliefs persay, for this is not a religious debate on what is true,  but more what did they have that made their beliefs so valuable as to be willing to loose everything they had including their lives, just to be able to practice their religion and find freedom and peace? I was greatly pondering this question when I came across a scripture in The Book of Mormon. I was reading in the 2nd Book of Nephi, Chapter 33 which reads:

"And now, my beloved brethren, all those who are of the house of Israel, and all ye ends of the earth, I speak unto you as the voice of one crying from the dust: Farewell until that great day shall come.

 And you that will not partake of the goodness of God, and respect the words of the Jews, and also my words, and the words which shall proceed forth out of the mouth of the Lamb of God, behold, I bid you an everlasting farewell, for these words shall condemn you at the last day.
 For what I seal on earth, shall be brought against you at the judgment bar; for thus hath the Lord commanded me, and I must obey. Amen."

As I read this scripture, I was taken a back by the great prophet Nephi's powerful decleration. I found within my reading the most powerful expression of faith I have ever witnessed. Nephi knew exactly what he believed in with not a single ounce of doubt. He believed it. He knew what was true and he was not willing to back down or sugar coat or deny any part of truth as he knew it. This was it to him. To all else all he could hope for is that everyone else would come to know what he knew to be true as well. He would not excuse himself for anything.

I was struck hard within my heart as I realized this is the faith that we must have. The faith that the saints of old had. I read and watch various things that demonstrate the faith and trust The early pioneers had in what they believed. They knew it to be true. Isn't that worth fighting for? Isn't that worth dying for?

My plea to all who may hearken unto this post is to look within yourselves and find out if you truly have this same passion, this same faith, this same way of life that these brave men and women had, and do have today. I find it fasinating that the saints Faith was not another apendage to their lives, rather their faith was their lives and everything else was just added upon to support this mortal journey. I know what I believe. I make no excueses as Nehpi did not.