December 23, 2005
one thing thou lackest
I have recently been greatly impressed by the story of the rich young ruler when he approached the saviour and asked what lack I yet? the response was immediate, yet mostly unimportant to me today, the important aspect was "one thing thou lackest" after expounding upon that one thing, what was the young mans response? He turned his back on the call to serve, he left the savior and his opportunity to show his metal. my mind was drawn to the fact that despite this young mans worthiness (easily enough for a temple recommend) he still lacked one thing. many of us here, whether recommend worthy or not, are lacking at least one thing that is holding us back from our various calls to serve.
the half question half prod to gospel action the saviour used, was "if thou wilt be perfect." is perfection our goal. is complete spotlessness our only drive. I am sure that if the young man had asked the savior's help in overcoming his desire for wordly things, that the savior would not have turned his back. However the young man felt guilty that he couldn't give it all up at once and therefore left the savior for good. What good is repentence if it is a one time cure all.
my point in this matter is that we each are lacking in our commitment, yet not in our desire. there is no hope for one who has the potential to be perfect, but no desire to do so. on the other hand there is much hope for one who struggles and struggles yet with great emphasis and love for the saviour exclaims "I want to be good." this simple phrase has helped me see the savior's loving arms through the clouds of my own sins on many occasions. the things that I lack seem to be a stain I cannot remove, yet the lord has promised "though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow, though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."
I struggle, and I'll be the first to admit it. we each have our own challenges, but no one has ever struggled as much as our savior.
the straw that didn't break the camels back
our savior knows us. he knows each of us so well, that it is a true wonder. if you feel that nobody understands what you are going through, or nobody could understand the pains you are feeling, whether physical, emotional, mental, or stress, then look to the savior. you would be right to feel that no mortal fully understands what you are struggling with. Jesus however is there. he lives to help. he is the ultimate encyclopedia of life that we can turn to in our darkest hour. however, this encyclopedia is not one that can be rummaged through by topic. it must come by intense study, prayer, and fasting. I have often felt that my sins are too much to get me into heaven. There was the straw. that one that broke the camels back. The difference in this story is that the camels back won't break. It can't. he has overcome the world. we may try. we may feel that there is no more hope, I have used my last chance. I don't believe god looks at it that way. there is a lyric to one of my favorite christain songs, that has often provoked me to tears. - can I be the one to sacrifice, or grip the spear and watch the blood and water flow.
what are we doing to our lives. it is a question that we must each ask ourselves. i pray, that we are striving and loving the way that the lord strove and loved. there may be straws of trials and afflictions placed on our back. they may be mountains of hay, or they may be small bales. the question is, are we going to let it break our back, or make us stronger?