08 November 2007

Gratitude

Bruce Almighty is one of my favorite movies. I love the way Morgan Freeman plays Heavenly Father as a character.



The film really raises the question, "If I had God's power, what would I do with it?"

This question holds a special place for members of the LDS church because we believe in eternal progression. We believe our purpose in life is not only to return to our Heavenly Parents, but to become like them in power and purity.

Having the power of the Almighty is almost unfathomable. As I sit here, I cannot think of anything I could do with God's power that would work out in my favor. A great example comes from Bruce Almighty; Bruce (with God's powers) decides to answer everyone's prayers by giving them exactly what they ask for. Consequently, more than half the city wins the lottery, and everyone walks away with about $6. You think you're doing someone a favor, and it doesn't do them any good. Ending poverty and hunger would invite some control freak to come along and oppress some unsuspecting group of people by taking their food away from them. God could spend all day fixing things, and it wouldn't make a difference because humans tend to create problems for themselves where they didn't have to exist. And when you squish the oppressors, you're labelled as an Old Testament people squisher that has no mercy.

If I had God's powers, I suppose there would be people that wouldn't hate me. But they would have a funny way of showing it. Like the Crusades. And self-help books. And all the others things that were supposed to be about serving God, but turned into something else. He asked us to love each other, and only do the things that reflect that love. The only thing I think I would even attempt to do would be to say that again. How you say it any louder than sacrificing your Only Begotten Son, I don't know.

I guess I could try. But honestly, "Love one another as I have loved you."

Why is that so hard?

If I were God for a day, I would switch things up. I would tell everyone to just shut up. Shut up for five minutes. Stop praying to me. Stop begging for the most inconsequential things. Stop expecting me to fix what I didn't break, and then tell me I don't exist because I don't help you. Stop yelling at each other over things that don't matter. Shut the T.V. off so you can hear me. Stop thinking about your money and/or your jobs. Gather your families close to me so you can hear me. And I would take a pause, just to make sure they appreciate silence for how beautiful and sacred it is.

Then I would ask the world a question for a change. I would ask them, "Why should I give you anything else, when you can't you be happy with what you already have?"

And you know something? When people can answer that question, really answer that question, the people in this world will know more about themselves, their Father, and the universe in which they live.

But until then, God will continue to humble us. Which tends to look something like this:



1 comment:

  1. I like the question, "Why should I give you anything?" It goes right to the heart of the central doctrine of grace and just cuts the heart out f mortal pride. I think I will use it in a talk sometime and, with attribution, of course, on my own blog for my family and friends.

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