Many people, when they talk about the Doctrine of Christ, rattle of a list of steps from the scriptures. It’s dry and lifeless. This is what you do, but there is no desire or reason to do any of it, but at least you know “correct doctrine”.
I like this passage a lot because it builds up a desire to want to come to Christ. In addition to repentance, it incorporates faith — faith that the Lord will receive you, just as you are, warts and all. You have nothing to hide. Childlike. No pretense.
By this ye may know if a man repenteth of his sins–behold, he will confess them and forsake them. (D&C 58:43.)
The following quote says “at this very moment”, now, “no matter what your spiritual condition is”. This means everybody. I think it’s worth planting the seed and conducting an experiment in faith, as Alma suggests.
Thanks to Julia Wentzell for sharing the following on Facebook today. It comes from Todd McLaughlin. Julia Writes: “These are the words a friend shared today. I absolutely loved what he had to say. They feel like truth.”
Consider with me the following process of repentance. I would like to know how you think it would impact you.
What if at this very moment, no matter what condition of life you are in, you turned to the Lord with all that you are, all that you have been, and all of the desires for your future – and present it to him straightforwardly and in plainness?
What if instead of hiding from the Lord because of your pain, and your weakness, and your sins, and your depression, and your shame, and your fear – you came to him and presented all of it to him.
In other words, you don’t wait until you conquer a bad habit, or “make yourself better”, or overcome something that is weighing you down. You come to him, as is, and fully present everything to him?
If you have sin, bring them to him and show him. If you have weakness, show him those weaknesses. Bring all of them with you and present them. If you have a difficult past. What if you brought it all to him and shared it with him?
If you have fear and desires that you are ashamed of. Why not just bring them to him? Hide nothing from him.
Give everything to him “as is”. Show him everything in its present condition. Do not wait for anything to change. Do not wait to do better first. Do not hold back anything and do all of it right now.
And expose them to the full light of truth. Allow his love and truth and light teach you about each of those things. Allow him to redeem every aspect about you. Every bad experience, every sin, every fear. Allow them all to be exposed to the full light and allow the Lord to do a redemptive work. Allow him to teach you about each thing…Tell him all about it. Ask him to teach you about it and to redeem the experience.
Do you fear the judgments of others? Describe all of it to him and expose it to light.
Do you desire wealth and a kingdom of this world? Tell him all about it and ask that his light and truth may flow through those desires and ambitions and transform into something Holy.
This process of repentance is no small thing. It takes every ounce of energy and attention we have. It takes all of us. Nothing can be hidden nor withheld.
Ultimately, and soon, we ourselves must lay on that alter. Everything about us must be given to the Lord. There is no other way.
And if we do it, the Lord can redeem the darkest and distorted parts of us. He can in a moment heal the most broken parts of us.
But he can’t unless we hold nothing back. No works of darkness. Nothing can be held from his awareness and his light.
This process of repentance will bring the full gift of the Holy Ghost to us. The Gift of the Holy Ghost is that our spirits and nature are transformed to be in complete unity with Christ. Possessing the Gift of the Holy Ghost means we are completely one with Christ. There is no greater gift.