Unlike Anything Else

boat2

After reconciling himself to the actual ocean crossing and seeking ore to make tools, Nephi’s next step was to commence building the worthy vessel that would convey his entire family across the deep water to an entirely different life.  In moments of uncertainty it is nice to fall back on the familiar but Nephi’s way forward would be anything but familiar.  He says that as he began building the ship he did not build it “after the manner of men” but rather was instructed by the Lord on how it should be pieced together.  I think this part of the story strikes at the heart of the living that we all do each day.  When we realize that we are on the shores of an ocean  we’d like some sort of blueprint for the boat that will take us safely across foreign waters but often God asks us to trust Him as He helps us to build our own curious ship.  Like Nephi’s, your vessel may not look anything like ships you’ve see and you may not understand why certain things need be a part of it but oftentimes the wisdom of the form is revealed over time.   As Nephi’s boat took shape he was ridiculed by his brothers for the unfamiliar design of his ship.  In those moments where doubt was flung at him from many angles, he was invited to dive into deeper attunement with heaven and trust the revelation that he was receiving.  Those, my friends, are the formative moments, where we own our own architecture with God.  And the potential result of those brave moments, if we stick with the building, is a kind of soul-deep knowing that influences everything else we create with Him.

Take Action: If, in your occasions of forward progress, you have times where the deafening voices around you crowd out the whisperings of intuition and inspiration, take note and find a few quiet moments to re-align with Heaven and then tuck those moments of connection deep in your soul, stand tall and walk confidently forward knowing that you and God are building something that is strong and seaworthy to carry you purposefully across the oceans you face.

Beholding His Glory

Moses, a man who had a storied relationship with God, was once offered a view of His work and His glory.  Until recently, whenever God has shown someone a vision of His creations and all of His works, I’ve imagined it as some sort of humbling history lesson which progressed in marginally boring fashion.  As in, Heavenly Father saying “Look at all the things I’ve created, look at all these people, and these people, and these people.”   Click, click, click.  And then whoever is experiencing the vision usually says “Wow, that’s profound, I realize I’m actually quite small and maybe even nothing compared to everything you’ve ever made.”  But what if they’re talking about more than that?  What if those moments of heavenly perspective, had by Moses, Nephi, and others, illustrated not just our existence but our connections to each other?  What if they had the chance to glimpse the way the Savior can help us weave our free-wheeling selves back to Him by loving and helping each other?  What if what they saw were the moments we live that we humbly say “I had no part in making that come about,” the times when we are part of  an experience that simply could not originate with us?  Those are the moments when I reel back with awe, praise,  and completely unforced humility at the grandeur before me, similar to what they describe.  Can you imagine witnessing all of those moments throughout all time?  I love the idea that His work is to help us help each other back to Him.  All it takes is willing participants.