Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools
This week I read eight chapters in the New Testament and six more in the Book of Mormon. I read many great things, however, it was these eight words in Romans that I would play over in my mind all week long. I find it interesting and very telling about the nature of God. He does not need many words to inspire change in his children, just a few words read with the company of the Holy Ghost can help us to know what we need to do. I heard the loving and warning voice of the Holy Ghost as it said this was what I needed to work on. These words were for me, now.
I was humbled by the question that came next, in what ways am I professing myself to be wise, as to my own strength, and not in need of God's help and strength to overcome? I received a lot of answers. How often have I said, 'I've got this' when met with a challenge; be it an accounting quiz or dealing with a matter of discipline with one of our sons? It's probably crossed my mind way too many times. How many times have I gone in with the mindset that I am wise and need no help only to stop, failing in the middle, to pray for the help I needed to begin with? The answer is; too many to count.
How do we overcome the temptation to proclaim our own wisdom? And avoid the fallback into foolish defeat?
I turned to the scriptures and found several great examples;
Ammon expressed joy filled gratitude to God in all things and recognized his own weakness' before Him. And then bore testimony of what he could do with God's strength. He was humble, grateful, joyful for the help, and bore testimony.
Alma 26:11-12 But Ammon said unto him: I do not boast in my own strength, nor in my own wisdom; but behold, my joy is full, yea, my heart is brim with joy, and I will rejoice in my God.
12 Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things;
In Isaiah, we read that those who wait upon the Lord shall have their strength increased. Patience and obedience while we wait, yields blessings of strength to run and not be weary. I don't know about you, but I can always use more strength to attack a to-do list.
Isaiah 40:29 & 31
29 He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.
31 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
While teaching the people of Corinth, Paul teaches us how he overcomes the temptation to only rely on his own strength. First he beseeches the Lord that he will remove the pride from him, then he acknowledges his weakness and the Lord tells him that His strength is made perfect in weakness. Paul gives gratitude for the weaknesses that draw him nearer to his Savior. In our infirmities do we find the humility to beg for the strength we need to overcome.
2 Corinthians 12:8-10 8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly ,therefore, will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
10 Therefore, I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.
How do you set aside the temptation to think you can do it all on your own?
I feel certain that if, in our homes, parents will read from The Book of Mormon prayerfully and regularly, both by themselves and with their children, the spirit of that great book will come to permeate our homes and all who dwell therein. The spirit of reverence will increase; mutual respect and consideration for each other will grow. The spirit of contention will depart. Parents will counsel their children in greater love and wisdom. Children will be more responsive and submissive to the counsel of their parents. Righteousness will increase. Faith, hope, and charity - the pure love of Christ - will abound in our homes and lives, bringing in their wake peace, joy, and happiness.
- President Marion G. Romney
- President Marion G. Romney