I was reading Mark's Scripture blog and decided it might be a good time to put down some of the thoughts I'd had floating around for a while.
here is a poetic version of some of my thoughts about the title of liberty and how applicable it is today
In memory of our God
There are those who would destroy our faith
Who would rob us of hope and love
Pretending to open our minds
In memory of our Religion
There are those who would destroy
Our free practice of worship
saying that we will offend
In memory of our Freedom
Some would twist the laws to infringe
The advancement of anything good
And ensure the tolerance of evil
In memory of our Peace
So many would pray upon us
Enslaving us in vice and in debt
In the name of good business
In memory of our wives, and our children
The family is under direct attack
Through every possible means
Now is the time to raise the standard
-Brandon Wainwright 2008
One of the things I noticed in a recent reading is that When Moroni established the title of liberty the Nephites were already at war and extensively so. But he turned and fought what he considered to be the real problem, the one inside his own country and among his own people.
It makes me think of the poem that says the waves cannot sink the smallest ship unless they get inside.
Moroni knew that he could overcome anything with the Lord's help. The Lamanites coming against them seem to be consistently described as numberless and yet Moroni was confident that the Lord would help him overcome if everything within was in harmony with the Lord.
I was also surprised at the brutality used against his own people if they would not fight for their own people they were killed and a lot of them were killed.
I realized that when I have things amiss within myself I need to take direct forceful and immediate action to fix the problems within.
Repentance is not about slow gradual shifts until eventually we are back on course; that is Satan's way. he wants us to see ourselves heading the wrong way and choose a path that is closer but still not right.
The Savior says "Come follow me" and then he moves on. He expects us to drop our nets forsake all and go.
When we find ourselves off course in forbidden paths or with the mists of darkness obscuring our view of the destination. the answer is not to try and slowly drift back we must grab the iron rod and turn immediately and precisely where it is pointing.
Repentance is a process and we are not always able to jump right back to the level of spirituality we were at back before we slipped away. But as fast as we can sometimes fall we can turn and get right back on track.
We know where the iron rod is all the time and it is always within our grasp but if we have drifted off the path a quick glance back and a weak swipe at the rod is usually not enough.
I have found that as I drift away from my good habits of scripture study my ability to focus and be enlightened by the scriptures is significantly diminished. At those times it is easier for me to grasp the word of God in our general conferences and often it is easier to listen than to read.
sometimes it takes several conference talks before I really feel like listening to another one.
but waiting for my heart to change and hoping that I'll be able to focus better next time I try is not the answer. I have to keep listening, reading, praying, and pondering for my heart to change and I know I've made progress when I'm not doing those things in order to be better but I'm doing them because I don't want to do anything else.
One of the darkest times of my life I made a commitment that although I couldn't fix the problems I was having I could do something and so I read scriptures for a blocked out hour every day. I did this at first almost as a punishment saying that I needed some extra help to straighten myself out, but after a while it was just a joy to me and I'd be so disappointed when someone started to talk to me and interrupted my time to feast on the word. then sometime later my schedule changed and I didn't put forth that extra effort to block out time for myself to study and I stopped spending the kind of time and it was a sporadic thing then a chore and then forgotten.
A decision followed through got me to a wonderful place and indecision lost me the habit.