Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Helaman 5:12 The Depth of my Foundation

I want to go back to Helaman 5:12-

Today- I want to study the words rock and foundation.

12 And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.

D&C 6: 34.
34 Therefore, fear not, little
flock; do good; let earth and hell combine against you, for if ye are built upon my rock, they cannot prevail.

President Monson, in October 2006 general conference, gave a talk entitled, "How Firm a Foundation." He starts his talk with a great analogy:

In 1959, not long after I began my service as president of the Canadian Mission, headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, I met N. Eldon Tanner, a prominent Canadian who just months later would be called as an Assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, then to the Quorum of the Twelve, and then as a counselor to four Presidents of the Church.
At the time I met him, President Tanner was president of the vast Trans-Canada Pipelines, Ltd., and president of the Canada Calgary Stake. He was known as “Mr. Integrity” in Canada. During that first meeting, we discussed, among other subjects, the cold Canadian winters, where storms rage, temperatures can linger well below freezing for weeks at a time, and where icy winds lower those temperatures even further. I asked President Tanner why the roads and highways in western Canada basically remained intact during such winters, showing little or no signs of cracking or breaking, while the road surfaces in many areas where winters are less cold and less severe developed cracks and breaks and potholes.
Said he, “The answer is in the depth of the base of the paving materials. In order for them to remain strong and unbroken, it is necessary to go very deep with the foundation layers. When the foundations are not deep enough, the surfaces cannot withstand the extremes of weather.”Over the years I have thought often of this conversation and of President Tanner’s explanation, for I recognize in his words a profound application for our lives. Stated simply, if we do not have a deep foundation of faith and a solid testimony of truth, we may have difficulty withstanding the harsh storms and icy winds of adversity which inevitably come to each of us.

I think everyone who considers him or herself a Christian, has a foundation in Christ, but the question is the depth of that foundation. The bigger the adversity, the greater depth that will be needed.

So, how then, how is our foundation in Christ built? Let's go back to President Monson's talk for the answers:

"How can we build a foundation strong enough to withstand such vicissitudes of life? How can we maintain the faith and testimony which will be required, that we might experience the joy promised to the faithful? Constant, steady effort is necessary. "

I think that is sometimes the biggest challenge, making our effort constant and steady rather than sporadic and occasional. President Monson then gives us three steps for our everyday lives that will strengthen and fortify our foundations:

"First, fortify your foundation through prayer." He tells us to have prayers with meaning and sincerity, accompanied with listening, he says, as we do, "we will be strengthened and blessed. We will come to know Him and His desires for our lives. "

I like that-that through prayer we will come to know Him, and His desires for our lives. I have been seeking that lately, wanting to know God's will for my life, and trying to align myself with his will. It is so natural to seek my own will, and a bit of a spiritual struggle to discern the difference.

I will have to continue another day- I have kids to feed :)
Here is a link to Did You think to Pray, by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. When I was young, I used to hear this song and think that "Ere" was a person who kept forgetting to say his prayers.

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