Sunday, December 26, 2010

His Image. My Countenances.

Today in Sacrament Meeting one of the speakers read excerpts from from Alma 5.

I call that chapter "The Personal Evaluation Chapter.” Because Alma asks important questions pertaining to my standing before God.

And when I evaluate myself honestly, it hurts enough to want to repent!

The first three questions Alma asks are:

1. Have you sufficiently retained in remembrance the captivity of your fathers? (In other words, for me, “Do you remember the sacrifices of the early Saints? Their persecutions? Their journey west?”)

2. Have you sufficiently retained in remembrance His mercy and long suffering towards them? (Are you learning enough and consistently about those early Saints, and even new members of the Church today who have been guided and protected and led by the Lord’s hand to HIs gospel?)

3. Have you sufficiently retained in remembrance that He has delivered my soul from hell? (Umm, I think that one is self explanatory).

But today, this question, “Have you received His image in your countenances?” made me think of this question more than just looking at myself in the mirror and taking an accounting if I have His image in my countenance.

Because, if I would have noticed before, the word countenances is NOT singular, it's plural.

Which got me to thinking that it is certainly A LOT easier for me to see His image in my countenance (singular) when I’m feeling high on the Spirit!

Like when I am in a testimony meeting at Girls’ Camp,

Or serving someone who is in need,

Or watching General Conference . . .

Ahh!  His image in my countenance.

But . . .

when I’m frustrated with disobedient children,

or impatient with the cashier because I’m #8 in line and I was supposed to be somewhere else 20 minutes ago,

or when my ideal circumstance has been crushed by the weight of adversity . . .

I’m pretty positive I cannot see (and neither can He) His image in my countenances (plural).


Which means, essentially, I really haven’t experienced the MIGHTY change of heart necessary that would (or could) allow me to look up to God with a pure heart and clean hands.

Not with those countenances (plural), anyway.

Because a mighty change of heart engraves His image upon my countenances at ALL times, and in ALL things, and in ALL places.

And repentance is the key.

Because He does want to see His image in ALL of my countenances (plural).

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