A great truth reoccurred to me this morning: Punctuation saves lives.
"Let's eat Grandma."
"Let's eat, Grandma."
Moving on. I have spent a couple mornings thinking about, and dissecting, the following verse:
"O, my beloved brethren, turn away from your sins; shake off the chains of him that would bind you fast; come unto that God who is the rock of your salvation." 2 Nephi 9:44-45
Gotta love that prophet Jacob.
A few thoughts have come from my "chewings" on this verse. First, look at the power words: turn away; shake off; chains; bind you fast; and rock.
I am reminded of one of the meanings of repentance—it is to turn from what you shouldn't be doing, and turn to the Savior.
We all know that famous painting of Christ knocking at the door that has no doorknob. We take away the message that we have to open the door; our Savior does not break the door down and force His way into our lives— EVER. We have to turn to Him. But, one thing I realized this week that I hadn't seen before: He can look through the window and hear through the door what is going on inside. He may not break the door down, but that doesn't mean He is ignorant of what we are doing. Can't hide one thing from God. Maybe that is one of the reasons He keeps knocking.
(Leaving the squirrel I just ran after, I return now to the verse.)
Though I didn't want to go there, "shake off" took me to Taylor Swift and her song, "Shake It Off." Thanks a lot, Tay-Tay.
To bind is to tie with a flexible cord, some might even say a flaxen cord: "and [Satan] leadeth them by the neck with a flaxen cord, until he bindeth them with his strong cords forever." (2 Nephi 26:22) A strand of flax alone cannot hold you, but many strands woven together will. One bad choice after another will bind you—restrain you—and you might as well be chained.
I had to ask myself, "Self, what 'flaxen cord' choices are you making that will lead to a chain that is harder to break? GET OUT NOW!"
You bind with flexibility ("I can do this one little thing, it won't hurt…" famous last words) until it's too late to get away easily.
But, lest we despair, the verse ends with the rock of our salvation who is Jesus Christ.
Few things are firmer than a rock that is anchored in the earth. Like an iceberg, you can't see what is below the surface. So it is with the Savior. To the casual observer, Christ looks like a nice guy with good values; a gifted teacher. But look deeper, dig into His gospel, and you find His deeper Self—the grace, mercy, love, patience, guidance, sacrifice, help, peace, vision, forgiveness, direction, and strength which go on forever.
"Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me." Revelation 3:20
Compose a song about THAT, Tay-Tay. I dare you.