Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Oh, the Joy!

Most of the time when we think about living the gospel of Jesus Christ, we think in terms of behavior. For example, We think in terms of “Thou shalt not steal.” However, if a person wants to steal and thinks stealing would get him what he wants in life, but has been taught he shouldn’t steal, then living the gospel is very difficult. He is always having to control the urge to steal and tempted with thoughts about how the gospel is so difficult to live and is a burden in his life.

But Jacob teaches us that living the gospel isn’t about behavior; it is about thoughts. He tells us, “Remember, to be carnally-minded is death, and to be spiritually-minded is life eternal” (2 Ne 9:39). Behavior is born out of our thinking. If we are carnally-minded and want to steal from others then living that commandment is very difficult, and eventually those thoughts can be so strong we end up stealing. But if we are spiritually-minded so that the thought of taking something that belongs to someone else is repugnant to us, living the commandment is easy.

It is this way with all gospel principles and commandments. It starts in the mind not in the behavior. We need to learn to control our thoughts and direct them so that we are spiritually-minded and then our actions will be righteous and living the gospel a joy instead of a burden. Maybe that is why the phrase, “spiritually-minded is life eternal” forms the acronym SMILE. When you are spiritually-minded the joy you feel makes you smile!

6 comments:

Wendi said...

That's a great acronym and a very cute kitty. Happy Thanksgiving, Sherrie! :)

Machen family said...

did I need this today! Thank you

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

Wendi, I'm not an animal person, but this cat was cute! And Happy Thanksgiving to you! SMILE!!!

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

Machen Family, I'm glad it worked for you. That makes me happy! Have a great thanksgiving!

dani said...

I love this; it gives your mind a safe place to go rather than wallowing around in the carnal! Think Spiritual! :)

Sherrie Mills Johnson said...

Dani, I like how you call it a safe place to go! That's exactly what it is.