On Sunday a little over a week ago the speaker repeated a quote that I had heard several times before. It is a quote by Joseph Smith from a day when he was speaking to the women of the church. He said. “By unity of feeling we obtain power with God.” Immediately I latched onto one word in that quote. He said with. And also immediately I began to wonder what power with God means. What does it look like and how does it feel.
So for my scripture study I wanted to see if power with God was used in other places and I found a few. My favorites were found in Genesis 32:28
28 And he said, Thy aname shall be called no more Jacob, but bIsrael: cfor as a dprince hast thou epower with God and with men, and hast fprevailed.
and D&C 121:36
36 That the arights of the priesthood are inseparably connected with the powers of heaven, and that the powers of heaven cannot be bcontrolled nor handled only upon the cprinciples of righteousness.
I had written down 14 other verses to help me with my study and understanding. One of the words i have been studying on and off over the past 3 years is the word power. The word power can have so many meanings. I had always thought of it as strength and so sometimes when I would read about power in the scriptures it didn’t make a lot of sense to me. How could I obtain that strength. This time however, I realized that in many cases it means ability. God will make us able to carry out the things He asks us to to. We will have the ability to do the hard things. Sometimes that ability comes with strength. But we will have neither if we aren’t putting in effort ourselves by living up to the covenants and promises we have made with God.
I think the reason this struck me recently is because of the difficulties happening in our country. We are so divided as a people. I have been very concerned. Never before in my lifetime have I seen people unwilling to speak to each other because of a man that they have never met and never will meet.
And I go back to the quote. By unity of feeling.
This is not saying we all have to be the same or believe the same but we do need to feel for each other. Have empathy. Have compassion. Jesus Christ has said when ye are converted strengthen thy brethren. How can we strengthen our brethren if we aren’t speaking to each other. We are supposed to avoid contention. How can we avoid contention when we are carrying that contention around with us – intentionally.
I am concerned for our country and the world. I see what is happening here happening in many countries around the world. I’m not sure things are going to get better but I can tell you that the key to it all is faith, hope, charity and love with an eye single to the glory of God. if we can remember these things and begin to have an understanding of those 4 things we can begin to have unity. We may never all have the same opinions about how things need to be done in the government because of our various backgrounds and experiences but putting those experiences and backgrounds together to find a compromise may be the best thing that can happen to bring us back together again.
Today I am praying that all goes smoothly with the inauguration. That the peaceful transfer of power can happen today even though it hasn’t been very peaceful so far. I pray that we will be able to look at each other and offer a smile – behind the mask – a kind word and maybe a little service if it is required. That is how we can begin to change our own hearts and the hearts of those around us. Let us all be the people that Christ would have us be.
Photo by Daniele Levis Pelusi on Unsplash