Saturday, October 8, 2011

Love Thy Neighbor

Today I read Romans 13 which seemed to me to be all about the commandment to love thy neighbor as thyself. Paul actually said what I have said for years, although I did not know until today he said it too, that all the commandments that have to do with how we interact with others, are really just ways to keep the commandment to love our neighbor. I sometimes wonder what the world would be like if we actually followed this commandment, all of us. What would it feel like to know that no matter who you bumped into, you would be treated like you want to be treated. What a feeling that would be!

I have noticed as I get older, that more and more people are becoming selfish and are adopting the attitude of "what's in it for me?" instead of an attitude of "how can I help my neighbor?". We really need another speech like JFK gave and for someone to ask the country to think what we can do for our country and not what the country can do for us. It's almost inconceivable to me that we would live in a world where people would not want to provide for themselves. How can someone even think along those terms? If I were bedridden tomorrow I would go crazy about the fact that I can't provide for my family. I don't know what I would do. But all across this country there are thousands of people who seem to be content to just let others take care of them and seem to have no remorse over the fact that they not only do not provide for themselves, but don't want to either.

Such thinking is as foreign to me as a serial killer's is. I just can't even force myself to think along the lines those people are thinking. I really don't want to either. In both instances, those people's thought processes are very much in opposition to God. It is contrary to the law of heaven to not provide for yourself if you are able to. The Doctrine and Covenants state that wives, and children, have claim on their husbands and fathers for their support. That to me says that if you are able to and you are not supporting your families, then you are under condemnation from heaven. The Lord wants us to be self-sufficient in all aspects, both physical and spiritual. He does not want us to be reliant on someone else. That is why the Prophets and Apostles for years have been urging us to get out of debt. When we are in debt, we are reliant upon someone else and we are truthfully not our own person. We are as much in bondage as if we were addicted to drugs or pornography.

And if we are in bondage of any kind, we are not free to do the work of heaven. We are not free to help those around us as God wants us to. We are here to learn to overcome our natural man and to help those around us so that we can grow to be more like God. Loving our neighbor is an essential part of that. God loves His neighbor, He loves all of us and desires to help us. If we are going to one day be comfortable in His presence then we need to love our neighbor as well. And it really is a much better alternative than to hate your neighbor. But I guess it's all about what you want out of your life. God has laid it out for us what will make us the most happy. We can either believe Him and follow His plan, or do it our own way and hope for the best. As always the choice is ours. Choose wisely. Until tomorrow.

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