The Blessing Jar

I've begun a blessings jar. Seeing as it's made of a pickle jar, you can appreciate why one of the first blessings I put into it was "pickles."

And even though I've already lined the bottom of it with the motley assortment of blessings ranging from the standard gospel answers to the littlest things that mean so much to me personally, I'm looking forward to all of the repeats I'm surely going to have. Suffice it to say, I'm beginning to see that I can never be too thankful for all of the glorious privileges I've been given as a daughter of my Heavenly Father's covenant.

Just to share a few:

  • Naps on the couch
  • Bishops
  • Sleeping in
  • Three piece suits (on good looking men)
  • hot showers
  • the Priesthood
  • I Love Lucy
  • my roommates
  • Indoor plumbing
  • back massages
  • Jesus Christ
  • Debussy music
  • Lillies
  • Mercy
  • Trees
  • Poetry
  • Isaiah
  • Bubble wrap
Blessings are an interesting aspect of the gospel of Jesus Christ because the manner in which they're given is something that many of us do not understand. They are not always given to the righteous, nor are they always withheld from the unrighteous. They are not products of what we do. They are not only given to members of a certain church.

Blessings are given to us because of who we are. We are children of our Heavenly Father, who loves us and desires for us to be happy. He gives us blessings as our parent, desiring for our greatest good by helping us and guiding us to paths and people that will bring love and joy into our lives. Just as a loving parent desires to do nice things for their children, so does our Father in Heaven desire to bless us with peace, comfort, and wholeness despite our many trials and struggles.

However, a willing and obedient heart makes these blessings easier to see. We are then able to see that the red light that made us late for work is not nearly as important as the car that didn't hit us because of it. Blessings help us to change our perspective to one of humility and gratitude, a realization of the great need we will always have in the flesh for our Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ.

I testify that blessings enrich our lives when we are willing to receive them as they are given, and that our fullest happiness as sons and daughters of God is attached to receiving the blessings of the Kingdom in the name of Jesus Christ.
AMEN

Comments

  1. "Blessings are an interesting aspect of the gospel of Jesus Christ because the manner in which they're given is something that many of us do not understand. They are not always given to the righteous, nor are they always withheld from the unrighteous. They are not products of what we do. They are not only given to members of a certain church."

    You have to be careful with this statement. Blessings, as Joseph Smith taught, are irrevocably connected to keeping commandments. However, Christ also said that God makes the sun to shine on both the good and the evil. So you are right that some benefits come universally to humankind. But others are attached to living principles of the gospel. One of my life's favorite challenges is to try to learn what blessings go with what commandments and WHY. Learning the WHY allows me to begin to better understand the HOW. This leads to greater trust in the Lord.
    Christ said that if a man gives child a drink of water in Christ's name he would in nowise lose his reward. This suggests to me that every good thing we do will be rewarded, though it may not be in this life.

    Keep writing!

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  2. You are right. There are certain blessings that cannot be granted until all the blessings that necessarily precede them have been granted first. Temple marriage cannot take place until after baptism into the Church, etc. However, there are times when we need our Father to bless us even when we have made mistakes. And He fully reserves the right to bless us, even in those times.

    In my time at BYU, I've heard it taught that prayers combined with obedience result in blessings. There are truths to be had in these principles, however the emphasis is placed on what we must do--as if blessings are something we obtain any and every time we exercise those principles in our lives--as if God were some kind of calculator, and the right sequence of buttons will always equal 4.

    However, we can never fully understand how entirely reliant we are upon His infinite mercies. Even when we feel we are being strictly obedient, that obedience will never be enough for us to receive the blessings we need and crave for eternal life. And even though we may make mistakes, this does not disqualify us from the blessings that come through His forgiveness.

    He may be bound when we do what He says (D&C 82: 10), but not always in the ways we might think. And even if we don't do what He says, He grants His help where there is no promise. Such is the discretion and judgment of our loving and merciful Father in Heaven.

    Thanks for your thoughts!

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  3. Thanks for your thoughts on blessings. It is always so important for us to be willing to see the blessings we are given and to give thanks for them. I can't say I've ever given thanks for pickles...of course, I don't eat them so maybe that's why. :)

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