I finished the year of studying types of content in the Book of Mormon by studying the visit of Jesus Christ to the American continent following His death and resurrection as recorded in 3 Nephi. I learned the following principles from my study this month:
1. We must choose to receive the gifts God offers to us.
Jesus Christ invites us to receive His healing power. His atonement covers us and heals us, which is why we say He is risen “with healing in His wings.” He gives us light through His example and teachings. His atonement not only helps us receive eternal life but also helps us live more abundantly today. God has promised to be our “rearward,” protecting and assisting us as we do His work, which includes gathering His children back to Him. Our homes are happier and more secure when we receive God’s gifts.
Some of the blessings God offers us are limited only by our capacity to receive them.
2. Jesus expects us to be authentic.
Taking upon ourselves the name of Christ includes internalizing His attributes and teachings, acknowledging Him as our Savior, and accepting responsibilities to assist Him. If we participate regularly in activities which remind us of Him, then we can receive the blessing of being filled with the Holy Ghost.
3. God loves all of His children, and He wants us to love and serve one another.
We come from different backgrounds, have different talents and personalities, but when we join the Church of Jesus Christ, we become “one fold” with one shepherd. We must remember that our relationship with other people affects our relationship with God. In particular, anger drives away the Spirit of the Lord.
God wants to help us achieve our righteous desires, and we can each contribute to His work in unique ways. If we have been blessed with faith and spiritual knowledge, we should view these gifts as opportunities to serve others, not as a reason to be self-righteous.
4. We can choose to overcome our fears by trusting God.
The Savior encourages us to “be of good cheer.” When other people oppose us, their “weapons” will not overcome us if God is with us. We can work with confidence, anticipating a bright and prosperous future, in spite of the uncertainty we face. In fact, faith can only grow in an environment of uncertainty.
Enduring to the end means not giving up when life gets difficult. Often, the full blessings of an activity are only available after you have completed it.
5. Acquiring spiritual knowledge requires effort on our part.
We need to understand and internalize the principles taught in the scriptures, so that we can apply those principles to the unique circumstances we face. We also need to find connections and synthesize the concepts we learn in order to understand the unity of the gospel.
As we set goals, we need to seek guidance from the Lord, to make sure that our goals are leading us along the “true path.”