Thursday, August 7, 2014

"Overcome all things"

In Doctrine and Covenants Section 76 we have a description of those who will be exalted in the Celestial Kingdom. The description says that these "overcome by faith" and later says: "And they shall overcome all things."

For those unfamiliar, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches about more than just heaven and hell. We call hell "outer-darkness" and believe that only those who know Christ and wilfully rebel against Him will be sent there; all the rest go to a kingdom of glory in heaven: the Telestial, Terrestrial, or Celestial Kingdom, which correspond to the stars, the moon, or the sun respectively. The Celestial Kingdom has the glory of the sun and is where we all hope to go.

These phrases teach us a bit about how we can get there and what blessings we will enjoy should we get there. If we get there, it means we overcame by faith in this life. In other words, we rely on the Lord to get through the trials we face here. A few differences between simply overcoming and overcoming by faith might be:

- Humility in recognizing we need the Lord's blessing and are delivered by His mercy.
- Greater patience while we wait for a trial to pass.
- A willingness to submit to the Lord's will.
- Obedience to the Lord's commandments even in difficulty.
   - Such obedience is a sign of abiding faith.

We are also promised that if we are going to the Celestial Kingdom we will overcome all things. This promise seems great beyond comparison and comprehension. Imagine staring at your greatest insecurity in the mirror without the slightest twinge of inadequacy. How about knowing that your worst fears can have no power over you? This is just the beginning of the deep peace of overcoming all things through faith.

I know that God would have us be strong and empowered through His Son. It is true that if we come unto Christ He will show us our weakness, but none who follow Christ will be laid low. Instead, they shall "mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint." (Isaiah 40:31)

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