Wednesday, March 23, 2011

We're Giving Life!

A few weeks ago I heard a talk by the General Sunday School President, Russell T. Osguthorpe, in which he said, “I love the way Tahitians greet each other. The literal meaning of their greeting word—ia  ora no—means ‘life to you’ or ‘that you might live.’ We are either giving life or taking life from each other as we move forward on our way.”

To me the word life has usually meant the period between birth and death which is what is meant in Alma 34:32; “For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors.” So Brother Osguthorpe’s words, “We are either giving life or taking life from each other as we move forward” made me stop and think. Besides the act of birthing, how can I give life to others? And besides the act of murder how can I take life away from others? But these thoughts brought several scriptures to mind; “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace” (Romans 8:6), and “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10”10). Previously I’d just thought these were talking about Eternal Life, but Bro. Osguthorpe’s words made me wonder.

This sent me to my trusty dictionary where I found 20 main definitions for the word life. I searched through them and found two that apply to these scriptures. The first defines life as, “an animating and shaping force or principle.” The second defined it as, “providing interest and vigor.”

Yes, our words and the love we share with others does give life in that it can animate and shape the lives of others. We also can be an influence that provides interest and vigor. I like that idea that when I am sharing good and loving others I am giving them life.

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