Monday, September 29, 2014

Can Ye Feel So Now?

I had a powerful experience in the scriptures this past week.  Robyn and I had gone to the temple to do initiatories.  For those unfamiliar with the temple, there are some ordinances that you can go do together with your spouse, and some that are more solitary in nature.   This particular ordinance happens to be one that you are not together with your spouse.

As always seems to be the case, I finished before Robyn did and so I had about 30 minutes to myself inside the temple.  There are about a billion copies of the scriptures all over, so I decided to sit down and read from The Book of Mormon.

Of course, during normal study I already know where I am at in the book, but since this study was more extracurricular, I had the dilemma of where I should read.  I thought for a moment, and decided I would open up to Alma 5.  I've always thought that Alma's sermon here was particularly powerful.

The entire chapter is filled with questions.  I think the questions are great for helping anyone to take a personal inventory of their own life.  As a missionary, I frequently shared verse 14.  I always thought it was a good verse for asking yourself  if you've truly embraced the teachings of Christ, "[H]ave ye spiritually been born of God? Have ye received his image in your countenances? Have ye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?"

I think those are the most poignant questions in the entire chapter, but this time I decided to let Alma interview me all the way through.  I encourage anyone to do this.  To really do it thoroughly, it could take a good chunk of time, but I think it's worth it.  Some of the questions are pretty easy.  When he asks whether you are a murderer, you'll probably be able to answer fairly quickly that you're not.

But when he asks if you've been stripped of pride or stripped of envy those may be more difficult questions, at least they were for me.  I don't think of myself as particularly prideful or envious, but am I completely stripped of those traits?  Well, you can probably guess the answer, but I'll just say that there was some serious introspection there.

But as I read on, I came to a verse that I've read a billion times before, but it struck me in a new way this time.  In verse 26 there is a follow up question to my favorite question from verse 14.  It asks, "[I]f ye have experienced a change of heart, and if ye have felt to sing the song of redeeming love, I would ask, can ye feel so now?"

Can ye feel so now?

I remember working with people as a missionary who had, for one reason or another, fallen away from the church.  These were people who had served missions and had once been very strong.  At the time I wondered how they could have felt as I did and yet they fell away?  But then, as I truly pondered this question, I realized that there had been moments in my life when I would have to answer "no".

It was an eye opening experience for me.  I've been over this chapter many times before, but this time it just struck me differently.  I would encourage everyone to do a little interview with my good friend Alma.  He's got some great questions.  Have you experienced a change in your heart?   Do you feel the redeeming love of Christ?  Do you feel so now?


  1. Thank you. I wish we could go to the temple. I miss it. Our nearest one is an 8 hr drive. We maybe get there once a year. Don't even get me started on finding childcare for three hours...


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...