Thursday, January 28, 2016

Trials, Questions, and Faith

A good quote from Keith H. Meservy out of the OT Student manual:

“It is difficult to live with tension, but mortality—where we see through the glass darkly—is filled with it. There are always ultimate answers to what may appear to be meaninglessness or inexplicability in our lives, though these are not immediately apparent to us, the Lord however, has promised to supply them—eventually (D&C 121:28–32; 101:27–35). Any individual who insists that a good religious belief must explain all of life’s contingencies if it is to be believable and acceptable, should re-read Job or take counsel from Elder Harold B. Lee who affirmed:

“‘It is not the function of religion to answer all questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give courage (through faith) to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status. Therefore, take heed of yourselves, and as a wise world thinker once said, “If the time comes when you feel you can no longer hold to your faith, then hold to it anyway. You cannot go into tomorrow’s uncertainty and dangers without faith”‘ (Church News, source not quoted).” (Keith H. Meservy, “Job: ‘Yet Will I Trust in Him,’” pp. 139–53.)

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Mine Integrity

Often I've heard and cited Job's declaration, "til I die I will not remove mine integrity from me." But I never really looked at the context of the chapter, and assumed that Job was referring to the fact that he refused to renounce his faith in the face of his adversity. While that is true of Job, this particular declaration doesn't exactly come in that context.

In chapter 27, Job is in the midst of defending himself against his friends, who repeatedly insist that Job's woes must be a punishment from God and that he needs to repent. Job goes on, "My righteousness I hold fast, and will not let go: my heart shall not reproach me so long as I live." (Job 27:6) Job is saying that he won't remove his integrity in the sense that he won't give in to the temptation to second-guess his life, to fall into self-reproach, or to assume that God was punishing him when he had committed no great sin. He was whole through His redeemer, and his virtue endowed him with confidence.

I can certainly learn from that example, as confidence is not a strong suit of mine. Are false modestly, second-guessing, and questioning the trials I receive all forms of "remov[ing] mine integrity from me" or denying the Atonement in my life? Trials come in large part because that is what we signed up for when we came to Earth. Of course there are things that we should learn form our trials and ways that we should be refined, but if we are on the Savior's path we needn't feel that we are less that whole because our trials might seem punishing.