Growing out of Godliness

Hey everybody!! Today I have had a thought on my mind from church. It is making me more excited to be a mom, because I need to learn from my son!! He will come to this earth perfect, straight from God. I want to learn from the sweetness and purity that I am about to outline.

For those of you who don’t know, I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (also known as LDS or Mormon). I would love to outline more about my faith and my beliefs in another post, but for today I have some thoughts I want to share on a scripture that was brought up on Sunday.

“For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.”

This scripture sparked a discussion in class and a few of my thoughts that I can hopefully articulate today.

The thought I had as I read over that scripture was that children aren’t like we are. They don’t hold onto grudges, they forgive, they live in the present, they believe in themselves, they haven’t learned to doubt themselves yet. Their confidence has not been destroyed yet. It would seem that children are most godly, or most like God the younger they are. As we grow older, we become tainted by the world, by our circumstances, by social norms, by societal pressures. Indeed, we become MORE like the natural man than like God.

And there begins our quest for Godliness. To become like a child. I’m not sure when it happens that we get calloused, jaded, bitter, tainted. But it happens! We start giving in to carnal appetites. We begin to fall into folly. We literally grow out of our Godliness.

So then I am left with the question: how do I become like a child again? How do I conquer the natural man?

This scripture clearly states what attributes we need to acquire to become like a child again:

“And becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.”

The more I read these words, the more I realize these are also attributes of Jesus Christ. He teaches us how to put off the natural man.

Just like a child learns to walk with baby steps, one step at a time, we can learn to walk like Jesus Christ. It starts with small decisions. Instead of _______ , I am going to choose _______ . For me that might look something like “instead of being critical, I am going to be complimentary” or “instead of being hard on myself, I am going to build myself up.” These little changes to my frame of mind then lead to action. I actually have to do the thing I’ve chosen to change. And step by step, my nature changes. I become more like a child or more like the Savior. Step by step I master myself and refine my poor qualities.

This principle can apply to anyone and everyone, not just members of my church or Christians in general. Because really, this is a pattern of self improvement to help myself become all I can be. I see it as becoming like my Heavenly Father and becoming who He wants me to be.

This is kind of a word vomit, but this train of thought has really blessed me today and I wanted to share. Like I said, I will tell you more about my beliefs another time (maybe in another Sunday or two), but for today I hope you can be inspired like I was to improve yourself step by step. The walk through life can be long and tiring, but by working to be our best selves we can receive fulfillment and joy in even the bleakest moments.

 

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