We don't have to convince God that we are worthy of His love. He loves us and is eager to help us. If we are so focused on proving to Him that we are already good, we may miss the opportunity to let Him help us become better!
When Jesus declined a Phoenician woman's request with an unflattering metaphor, she cleverly found a way to insert her request into His imagery: "The dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters' table." The Savior rewarded this humble persistence.
“The Will of My Father”
A defining characteristic of the Savior's life was His commitment to fulfill His Father's will. Both during and after His ministry, He affirmed this commitment. We can follow His example by prioritizing God's will even when it's difficult.
Offended in Me
The Greek word for "offence" means literally a stumbling block or a trap. Jesus said, "Blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me." When we are offended, we can stumble, but God can help us to avoid that trap if we trust in Him.
Poor in Spirit
The Greek word ptóchos (πτωχός) means literally one who crouches or cowers. God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him. Are we spiritually poor but unaware of it? Have we not yet become ptóchos, crouching and seeking help from Him?
“Him That Rebuketh in the Gate”
Nobody likes to be corrected. Our brains are really good at constructing arguments to prove that we are right. We bristle when we are chastised, and even if we are able to override the initial defensive instinct and be civil, we can't seem to escape the initial sting and the instinctive desire to ignore or... Continue Reading →
“The Grass Withereth, the Flower Fadeth”
Placing ourselves entirely in the hands of God, being "willing to submit to all things which [He] seeth fit to inflict upon [us]" (Mosiah 3:19) is not so much an honorable thing as it is an obvious thing. It is an exercise of our God-given agency, to be sure, and it is a gift to... Continue Reading →
Isaiah reproved the children of Israel for being unwilling to hear hard things. He said they were the type of people who would "say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things." In contrast, they would request the easy stuff: "Speak unto us smooth things, prophecy deceits" (Isaiah... Continue Reading →
The Poor Among Men Shall Rejoice
After identifying a severe societal problem—rampant hypocrisy—Isaiah prophesies that God will address this issue by doing a "marvellous work" which will cause "the wisdom of [the] wise men [to] perish" (Isaiah 29:13-14, 2 Nephi 27:25-26). Included in this marvelous work will be the arrival of a "sealed book," which will be rejected by the learned.... Continue Reading →
The Book of Psalms and the Book of Mormon
The brass plates which Lehi and his family carried from Jerusalem contained a lot of content which overlaps with the Old Testament. Nephi describes three categories of writings, which correspond with three of the four groupings of books in the Old Testament: "The five books of Moses" - The Law (Genesis through Deuteronomy)"A record of... Continue Reading →