- By Elder Thatcher

A Thematic Blog - -By Elder Thatcher
"By necessity, by proclivity, and by delight, we all quote."
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Strait and Narrow

I draw on others' words a lot.  The most useful are those that belong to Jesus Christ or his representatvies.  I've been having a lot of thoughts this week about a certain text from Christ's "Sermon on the Mount."  In Matthew 7:13-14, the Man of Galilee said,
"Enter ye in at the astrait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."

A while back a friend of mine taught me to solve the Rubik's cube.  I'll be honest; I never ever would have figured it out by myself.  There are certain patterns that must be followed exactly if you are to solve it.  There's no way of getting around it; you have to move it in the right ways even when it appears not to make sense.   But as long as you follow the patterns, it is the same every time and it goes from chaos to order. 

In the same way, God gives us a "way" to obtain happiness.  Humanity has spent ages searching for this "way."  Jesus Christ declared, quite boldly that the way was strait or strict, and that it was narrow, and that he himself was the way, meaning that he is the example of someone who perfectly follows the "way" and that through him it is possible to follow the "way." 

Heber C. Kimball taught,

"You cannot be happy unless you submit to the law of God, and to the principles of His government. 
"When a person is miserable, wretched, and unhappy in himself, put him in what circumstances you please, and he is wretched still.  If a person is poor, and composes his mind, and calmly submits to the providences of God, he will feel cheerful and hpapy in all circumstances, if he continues to keep the commandments of God." 

Similarly, Marion G. Romney stated,

"These commandments are not arbitrary edicts of a vindictive tyrant.  They but set forth the laws and ordinances which produce--as a matter of cause and effect--peace, success, and happiness."  I like this idea.  I love these others' words.  If we are to treat life as a Rubik's cube that we want to be orderly, we simply have to follow the pattern. 

"We are not living in a world where all roads are radii of a circle and where all, if followed long enough, will therefore draw gradually nearer and finally meet at the centre:  rather in a world where every road, after a few miles, forks into two, and each of those into two again, and at each fork you must make a decision....Life is not like a river but like a tree....Good, as it ripens, becomes continually more different not only from evil but from other good." 

                -C.S. Lewis                                            

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