26 May 2008

Post 130

According to Nephi (whom I deem very trustworthy even if he was a little tactless sometimes), Lehi "dwelt at Jerusalem in all his days" prior to their family exodus into the wilderness (1 Nephi 1:4). So Lehi was born and raised in Jerusalem, raised his children to adulthood there, was prosperous and wealthy, probably very comfortable, and then the Lord told him he had to leave.

It seems to me that that would be a frightening call: to go out into the desert, not really knowing where you're heading--I would be a little hesitant. But Lehi, far from showing any signs of worry or doubt, seems to have never batted the proverbial eye at this idea. In fact, after he had sent his sons back for the plates, when his wife was totally wigging out on him and saying that he sent their sons off to die and that he and she were going to die now too--even at this very low point early on in the journey--just a few days into their decade-long journey--Lehi says, "I have obtained a land of promise, in the which things I do rejoice" (1 Nephi 5:5).

Lehi, you're still a decade away from that land of promise, and your wife is losing faith already because she thinks your sons are dead! You haven't obtained a land of promise; you're stuck in the desert!

But Lehi understood that, when God promises you something, it's yours; even before you receive it, if God says you can have something, you don't have to worry about delivery dates or bumps along the road because you can have absolute confidence that it will be yours.

And, if God calls you to move away from the only place you've ever known, taking you from a life of cold comfort into the scorching desert, and your sons rebel, and your wife complains, and you run out of food--just know that His promises will be fulfilled.

Sometimes God calls us to do things that we don't want to do, things that don't make any sense from our limited perspective. Sometimes He forces us to wait a long time for things that we think we ought to receive now. But I'm sure that He knows best--certainly He knows far better than we can--so just be patient a bit. Go out into that desert; water that burnt offering; "fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them," and all will be well.


  1. "...when God promises you something, it's yours; even before you recieve it." Wow... I really like that. I know I can be like Veruca Salt from Charlie and the Chocolate factory, and want it NOW. But I need to be patient...

    But yeah, I like the imagery that that has. ...It's yours... Not that you've just been promised it. Not that you've gotton your number and are waiting in line. And not that "later" that parents do... but it's yours... Maybe that's selfish of me, but I really like that. Very hopeful sentament.

  2. .

    Recommended: Hugh Nibley's Lehi in the Desert.

  3. I like the idea behind "you don't have to worry about delivery dates" . . . although it takes a whole lot of faith not to worry. (I know; I'm a compulsive worrywart)

    Also, I always found it interesting that when Sariah is griping at Lehi, she calls him a "visionary man." I always think that if Lehi had any sense of humor, he probably would have thought: "Well, of course I am. That's why we're here"

  4. Gadzukes my friend! I just got around to my blogging... both writing in mine and reading in yours... I had to print this one off so I can read it at a time of my choosing. In case you are wondering, the single sided page count after copying this into word is 9 pages. I'm excited.