|And thus the Lord caused stones to shine in darkness, |
to give light unto men, women, and children, Ether 6:3
All the world is a mirror and we reflect ourselves upon it.
I believe our lives reflect back what we take in. When we sow goodness we reflect goodness. Whatever we sow, we reap. Our hearts reflect what we take in and what we cultivate.
How do we learn to let the Lord touch our lives and then reflect his light on to others? How do we learn to shine like the stones that Ether used to cross the darkness of the sea?
What we choose to listen to and to view affects us. People will say that it does not matter but it does.
What we allow into our mind becomes a part of us - for good or bad. It becomes us and when we go out into the world, we reflect our views back onto those we interact with.
When I was growing up there was a big controversy about our health and what we ate. My grandfather, who lived to be 98 3/4 years old, was very adamant that diet was key to health and he not only watched what and how much he ate but also believed in the power of exercise and vitamins. He understood the workings of the body. He understood that what we put into our body affected the performance of not only our bodies but our mind and ultimately our spirit.
Naysayers at the time (and there were many) did not believe that diet would affect one's heath to such a great degree but that we were slaves to our DNA programming. So we were born to be heavy or slow or fast or whatever. My question is where does our choice figure in? Most criticizers ignore the power of choice in our lives knowing full well that the advertisers depend on their ability to sway our choice and direct us toward their money making schemes.
Today of course we've learned how cigarettes, with undeniable certainty, cause cancer, as does chewing tobacco. And we've learned that certain foods laden with sugars and heavy on starches affect our hormones and metabolism leading to early onset of preventable disease. Of course this is mostly all relative to our age and activity level. The point is that food affects our bodies, our moods, our health and our lifestyles. But the producers of processed foods and drugs don't want us to know this. They want us to continue to buy all that they sell. They want us to give up our power to choose what is good for our bodies and because of the addictive nature of many products, we do.
Our minds are affected by the content we allow in - not too unlike how our bodies are affected by the food we eat. What we put in reflects back on the world we live in. But if we live in a virtual world where real emotions do not affect real people then what we say and participate in does not matter. Or does it? Where we go on-line is separate from our life off-line. Or is it?
When we choose activities and material that does not value the affect upon our hearts and our minds we loose our ability to choose. There are activities and materials that purposefully want us to give up our power to choose what is good for our bodies and our minds, and because of the addictive nature of these activities, we do.
A light in the darkness
What if we choose to digest good material? to listen to good music and good words and strong truths? And beauty? Do we also loose choice? No because good choice reflects light. Just like when the brother of Jared asked the Lord to touch his stones. He asked for a source of goodness so that he would have a source of goodness to bring light and the reflection of goodness into his darkened world. Goodness brings light to the darkness of the world.
We too can seek for and ask the Lord to touch our heart with goodness that will in turn reflect goodness upon our days. We too can use the light of the Lord's stones to help us through our days where darkness prevails.
A real world
The real world is where we use all of our senses: hearing, touch, smell, taste, vision, emotion, and so many other wonderful senses that help us feel alive and warm and full of unmeasured joy. Beauty can be cultivated and reflected back onto those that we love and those that we interact in the real world.
And what a joy it is to be around, or to listen to those that cultivate the beauties of this world. What a joy it is to understand that we can surround ourselves with the reflections of others who also cultivate all that is good and joyful. To see the light of their stones that the Lord has touched for them and to share in their goodness of ideas, of service, of music, of art, of friendship, of kind words, etc.
I like the idea that our lives are reflections of our hearts desire. And I love the idea that if I ask the Lord to touch my heart so that I might have light He will. And I love that when I look into the world I can use the light of the stones and see the goodness and love reflected back at me.