“Be Ye Reconciled to God”
by Craig Lindquist
Yesterday, I sat helplessly by as my precious grandson wailed his little heart out. He had a terrible rash, and his sweet mother was doing all she could for him. It wasn’t enough. Even though the years of life have taught me that pain is inevitable, my heart still ached. Knowing that he had only recently left the bosom of his Heavenly Father, I wondered how much of this mortal life he understood before he left those celestial realms. I think we all can feel for my grandson, as most of us likewise still struggle to understand much of life.
We aren’t the only ones. Nephi struggled all of his life with challenges that would crush most men. His brother Jacob said they were a lonesome people, wanderers, and they mourned out their days (see Jacob 7:26). Even Moroni solemnly wrote, “I am alone. My father hath been slain in battle, and all my kinsfolk, and I have not friends nor whither to go; and how long the Lord will suffer that I may live I know not” (Mormon 8:5). The anguish in his soul is plainly evident and familiar to many of us.
I Even Remain Alone, by Walter Rane
It would be wrong to assume that those great men led charmed lives. Life was difficult for them, just as it is for us. They certainly had days when they felt estranged from God and needed to reconcile themselves with Him. Such is the way of our mortal probation. In speaking of this, Wilford Woodruff gave this counsel: “[We] complain because we meet with oppression, persecution, and affliction, yet I wish to say to my brethren and sisters that these things are the heritage of the Saints of God. . . . This has been the legacy of the Saints of God in every age, from Father Adam down to our own day. Those that live godly in Christ Jesus must suffer persecution. . . . It is necessary for a people who are destined to inherit the celestial kingdom to be a tried people.”1
What an interesting concept! Difficult days are our heritage as Saints of God. They are our legacy! Is this what the Lord meant when He said, “We will make an earth whereon these may dwell; And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them” (Abraham 3:24–25)? The answer is unequivocally yes! It is through the Atonement of Jesus Christ that we have the ability to reconcile our lives with Heavenly Father. When we find we have drifted away from the peace and joy we once had with God because of our sins, our challenges, or just the demanding schedules of life, we would do well to heed the Apostle Paul’s directive to “be ye reconciled to God” (2 Corinthians 5:20). But how can we do this? Perhaps the process is much like what my wife and I go through when we find there is a wall of hurt or anger between us. First, we remember that we love each other and how joyful life was without that wall. Then we do the humbling work necessary to erase the hurt that pushed us apart. When this is done with loving-kindness, the peace and joy we once knew returns. It is the same with our Heavenly Father and us. We remember; we repent. Then we smile and stay the course.
All the Earth is Mine, by Greg Collins
Craig Lindquist is an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He is a father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, happily married to Dianna for the past 46 years. By trade he is a cabinetmaker, actor, and writer. He lives in Henderson, Nevada, except when he travels to film or to work on the construction of temples.
- Discourse by Wilford Woodruff, December 10, 1882, The Wilford Woodruff Papers, p. 2, wilfordwoodruffpapers.org.