Thursday, July 16, 2009

In Alma Chapter 50 it talks of the preparations for war that Moroni made. As I was thinking about this it struck me that we are doing the same thing in our day. Our enemy isn't a tangible one who's going to come after us with stones and spears or even bullets or bombs. In some ways I think it would be easier if this was the case. But our enemy isn't after our bodies- he's after our souls.

Satan is coming at us with everything he has in his arsenal. If we aren't careful and prepared for war with him he will catch us unaware and defeat us.

Moroni reinforced his cities with ridges of earth topped with timbers to the height of a man. He then built a picket on them and also caused high towers to be erected. His people would be able to cast down stones from the high towers without fear of being injured in return. He didn't just stop with fortifications but took it one step further and drove his enemy out of his lands.

This has a great parallel to our day. We build ridges of defense as we do those simple daily steps that build our faith: say our personal prayers, do personal scripture reading, and serve others. These are things that aren't fancy or complicated, but they do require real effort and work. Our defenses won't build themselves and we can't expect others to build them for us!

I see the timbers on top of the ridges as those things we do that further help our testimonies to grow and also have us reaching outside of ourselves to bless others: attending church, family home evening, family scripture reading, family prayer, visiting teaching/home teaching, and serving in callings. Again, each of these steps takes work and can be very hard. But as we are faithful each step helps to further build up our defenses. We will be strengthened to be able to withstand Satan's fiery darts, his simple and straightforward attacks, as well as his stealthier forays into our territories.

The high towers could represent the temple in our day. It is a high and holy place, meant to be set apart from our daily routines. As we attend the temple regularly we are given special protection and strength. We are able to cast "stones" at our enemy from a place of safety. Those stones might be: sharing the gospel with a friend, taking a meal to someone, teaching in church, doing our visiting/home teaching, family home evening, serving in our community, or any other activities that bring us closer to God. The adversary cringes each time we are faithful, and as we actively work to build our fortifications against him he is busy looking for new strategies to get into our territory and conquer us. We have to put forth the effort to push back against Satan's attacks and tell him in no uncertain terms that he is not welcome in our "lands."

These are dangerous and harrowing times that we live in. We are being attacked on all fronts and must fight to remain faithful and strong. We need to build our testimonies every day and consciously seek and promote those things that are good and right so that we can help to bring others to safety and let them experience the shelter of righteousness. We can't take our defenses for granted or expect them to hold up through the roughest battles if we aren't constantly checking them, reinforcing them, and making them stronger. But we can win the war if we rely on the Lord and do what He's commanded us to.

1 comment:

heather said...

That was so inspiring to read your thoughts. I really got to get in gear my fortifications might not hold up so well in a full on assault. Thanks for the insight and motivation.