Sunday, March 22, 2009

And now for my next trick...

In the Book of Mormon there is a story of a prophet named Nephi who had been tied up with cords by his wicked brothers who were going to leave him to die in the wilderness. Nephi prays to the Lord to be delivered from his brothers and asks that he can have "strength that [he] may burst [those] bands with which [he] was bound" (1 Nephi 7:17). Nephi is a righteous man and has some serious faith so the Lord does in fact deliver him. What is interesting however is that he is not given the strength to burst these cords, but the Lord simply loosens the cords from off Nephi's hands and feet and his is free (1 Nephi 7:18).
I think life is like that a lot of times. In faith we will pray for something extraordinary to happen, like having the strength to burst some cords, but what ends up happening is something somewhat less remarkable, cords being loosened. Loosening cords is just as effective as bursting them if the goal is freedom, and perhaps even better because now Nephi has some perfectly good rope to use in the future. The real question is whether or not we recognize the hand of the Lord in those very effective, but somewhat less remarkable blessing we receive in life. Nephi could have rationalized that his brothers were pretty poor knot-tiers and that the cords sort of loosened on their own, but being the righteous man that he was I'm sure he recognized the hand of the Lord instead of just relying on his own strength or good luck. I know that the Lord is involved in every person's life and gives us blessings big and small. I pray that we can recognize those blessings and their divine source.

1 comment:

Michaela Stephens said...

Nice insights in this entry. It's nice to see other people's perspectives on these things.

I have written about this same incident on my blog focusing on a slightly different aspect:

Also, I have also have a follow-up on Nephi when he was tied up on the ship.