In today's reading I thought about the children of Israel, how they wandered in the desert for 40+ years, how they were carried captive in to Babylon and how they have been scattered over the earth.
Verse 3 reads: "That after...the own due time of the Lord, they should return again...and possess again the land of their inheritance."
I think about my own trials and experience that I'm gaining; I know they only end or become fully understood after the due time of the Lord. And I think that I probably echo the sentiments of the house of Israel in asking periodically: OK Lord, what time is it exactly? 'Cause I'm pretty sure I'm done with this one... (sigh)... Only to wait it out just a bit more.
I was also thinking about a testimony that I heard in church on Sunday from Brother Johnson where he stated that the church is so true that we are asked to gain a testimony of our very own. I really like that! Even the great prophet Nephi practiced this. In verse 17 we learn that after his father had prophesied regarding the house of Israel and the coming of the Messiah, Nephi was desirous to know by the Spirit if what his father said was true, so he took it to the Lord to find out for himself. Based on several years of reading the scriptures, I know what comes next chapter, so I can tell you that the Spirit confirms all that his father had told him. What a huge blessing it is to have that ability. To have a member of the Godhead come and tell you stuff, personally, without having to rely on the word of others. I can know for myself. I DO know for myself! What a special blessing!
I need to digress just a moment to clarify my thoughts/intent of my last post.
My point of Sam v. Nephi is not to suggest that emulating Nephi is not a valuable idea. He is an amazing person and had tremendous faith, he even saw the Son of God, which I haven't since I've been on the earth, so it goes to show that his experiences working towards salvation are at a rate that are vastly different than mine. I'm sure the reason we have the books that he wrote are because he is such an amazing individual, and the lessons we learn from his wisdom are vital to salvation, or they would not have been included in the scriptures. My point is this: Nephi's best is different than the best that is expected from me. We are not required to complete the exact same tasks in mortality. He was called as a prophet of God, I have been called as a Mother in Zion in the dispensation of the fullness of time. I don't know what Sam's calling was during his life, but I know based on the scriptures cited yesterday that he fulfilled that calling to his utmost, or he would not have been saved. I love the great prophet Nephi, he is a huge example of a true believer and I want to be like him, but I always felt like Sam got the shaft in the whole experience because he wasn't a prophet, therefore, since I'm not exactly like Nephi, I am just not worth noting. But this is not true. Sam was saved, just like Nephi was. They each did their best and the Savior made up the rest. I'm doing my best and the Savior will make up the rest.