Wednesday, September 5, 2012

the drops of oil

A few weeks ago, I was asked to give a talk in my YSA ward on "Becoming Provident Providers: Temporal and Spiritual Self-Reliance," given by Elder Robert D. Hales from the April 2009 General Conference. I personally love assignments to speak because it helps me stay focused all week on a specific topic/theme, and i learn so many great things.

The message of my talk--which was really for me of course--was that temporal and spiritual self reliance doesn't happen all at once. It takes little steps at a time. As I talked to my friends about this, they reminded me of the parable in the New Testament, where the ten virgins are waiting for the Bridegroom. Five of the virgins had oils ready in their lamps. The other five did not. Each drop in their oil lamp was precious, necessary, and essential. Sometimes we don't realize how significant each of those drops are though until down the road. Its the same with scripture study and prayer. Each time we engage ourselves in a study of the scriptures, we consistently add a drop of oil to our lamp, one drop at a time.

This is a beautiful process--one that can change us overtime. Just like the people of Enoch were lifted up into heaven 'over a process of time,' we too are the same. We won't reach a threshold of goodness in a snap. We won't reach a threshold of spiritual self-reliance by reading the scriptures for 5 hours one day and forget for the rest of the week. We won't reach a threshold of temporal self reliance by investing $1,000 in a bank every 10 years. Its over the process of time.

So I'm far from perfect. But each day, when days are long, when plans go wrong, when food runs out, its finding those moments to glean from the pages of the scriptures. The crowning event in the Book of Mormon is when Christ comes to the America's to visit His people. However, the crowning event in the Book of Mormon for me, is Him testifying to me on every single page the truthfulness of the book, the divinity of the Plan of Happiness, and the happiness the gospel brings in my life.

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  1. Guess what I recently did... I bought a replica of a biblical oil clay lamp. It hasn't come yet, but I can't wait to see it! I am going to keep it on my mantle to help remind me of this exact principle. I'll probably also use it as a visual aid:) Sounds like your talk was really good.

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