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Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Likening the scriptures.

This is something we are encouraged to do: read the scriptures, ponder them, and see their application in our personal lives. This evening I was reading in Alma 43, and this verse jumped out at me.

Alma 43:8 "For behold, his designs were to stir up the Lamanites [historically the bad guys] to anger against the Nephites [historically the good guys]; this he did that he might usurp great power over them, and also that he might gain power over the Nephites by bringing them into bondage."

What popped into my mind next was the current political climate in this country and in many parts of the world. Evil men twisting their scriptures or dogma to incite hatred, whether it be ISIS among the Muslims, alt-right among ostensible Christians, or the worst element on the liberal side of the spectrum. Why do people do this? The desire for power over others. First they enslave their own people. Then they endeavor to use their slaves to conquer the Other.

Opposition is necessary in this life. Without struggle, failure, or heartache we cannot appreciate achievement, success, or joy. We need people who are tender-hearted, those who are tough-minded, people who can solve problems using logic and orderly progression, others who solve problems with compassion and education. Not all pegs are square; not all holes are round. We need inventors who create tools to free up people's time and other resources. We need dreamers who create art and music and literature with the time the inventors have freed up. We need prophets and scriptures and personal inspiration and revelation. We need to see the miraculous in one another. We need to see how our differences fit together like yin and yang to make a more interesting whole.

After the resurrected Savior visited the New World, several generations passed away in righteousness. 4 Nephi 1:17 "There were no robbers, nor murderers, neither were there Lamanites, nor any manner of -ites; but they were in one, the children of Christ, and heirs to the kingdom of God."

We are all children of the same Heavenly Parents, descendants of Adam and Eve, Noah and his sons, Father Abraham. Even those who do not consider themselves People of the Book are literally our brothers and sisters.

And we need to play nicely with one another, to spite the Devil.

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