Continuing with my Pathway, I am posting another assignment. My studying of The Book of Mormon has been one of the best learning experiences I have ever had. I have only read it once straight through, about nineteen years ago. All the other reading has been at Church here and there, and occasionally at home. Never in-depth and structured as I am doing now. I am actually seeing how it all unfolds and in exactly what order. It has been a great testimony builder for me with The Book of Mormon.
This weeks reading was Helaman 10-16. We are constantly reminded throughout the book of how mankind, in general, has a tendency to be obedient until all is well, and then fall back into sin, before being chastened by the Lord in one way or the other. As taken from the institute manual,"Helaman 12 contains one of the greatest summaries of a basic human tendency found anywhere in the scriptures." Speaking for myself, I certainly feel we are built that way, complacent by nature. That it takes constant effort to stay righteous. If I "coast" at all in life, I run the gamble of going backwards in the Gospel. I have come to the conclusion that that is why some of the most simple and sometimes mundane commandments we are given are so important. Prayers, attending Church, and reading the scriptures all included. The statement that we are ether moving forwards or backwards in the Gospel is so true. There is no "coasting", and that takes our constant effort in living the commandments and doing those things the Church asks of use.
Another big take-a-way from this week's assignment was a talk given by Elder Dean L. Larsen,"The Lord Will Prosper The Righteous". Along with the continuing falling backwards that we see with the Nephites, we are constantly reminded that the Lord promises to bless us with prosperity if we do what is right and keep the commandments. All we are asked in return, is to recognize his hand in our success. This was another downfall of the ancient inhabitants of the Americas. They would credit there own abilities for success, and not Heavenly Father's role in their prosperity. The Lord cannot lie; he will take care of our needs if we do what we're supposed to do, and then thank Him for providing for us.
It is also interesting how people can see great miracles and rationalize them away. Satan has a way to distort anything focused on the Gospel. The signs given to them, as predicted by the Prophets, would eventually be forgotten by a lot of the people.These are great lessons to learn from, I am thankful for the teachings in Helaman. Unfortunately I can see some of these patterns in my life, maybe not to that extreme, but this week's reading has given me better insight in some things I need to do better.