Preface: Being that February is the month of LOVE, I’m carrying that topic into my weekly scripture reflections.
Wikipedia defines love as:
Love is a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes that ranges from interpersonal affection (“I love my mother”) to pleasure (“I loved that meal”). It can refer to an emotion of a strong attraction and personal attachment. It can also be a virtue representing human kindness, compassion, and affection—”the unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another”. It may also describe compassionate and affectionate actions towards other humans, one’s self or animals.
Non-Western traditions have also distinguished variants or symbioses of these states; words like storge, philia, eros, and agape each describe a unique “concept” of love. Love has additional religious or spiritual meaning—notably in Abrahamic religions. This diversity of uses and meanings combined with the complexity of the feelings involved makes love unusually difficult to consistently define, compared to other emotional states.
Love is represented in many ways in the scriptures. This week the Plan of Salvation (*link leads to an explanation of these beliefs) has been on my mind. Knowing and understanding the “grand scheme of things” helps to ease the pain of trials while we are on the earth.
Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that Heavenly Father provided us with the Savior from the Creation of the world. This savior was His Only Begotten Son. We knew Him and loved Him. We chose to come to earth so that we could gain a physical body and return to Him after the Resurrection.
Giving mankind free will, He knew sin would be in the world. At the appointed time, Jesus Christ came to earth, bore our pains, and through the Atonement, served as our Lamb and Redeemer.
16 ¶For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
— John 3:16
President Gordon B. Hinckley once stated, “The whole design of the gospel is to lead us onward and upward to greater achievement, even, eventually, to godhood.” We are not meant to stand still and accept His grace once. We are to work to continually improve ourselves through our entire lives.
You are to put your faith into action and “Try a little harder, to be a little better.” (President Hinckley)
The scriptures repeatedly tell us how much God loved us. Why would we want to be separated from Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Through faith, we can return to Him who created us.
39 For behold, this is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.
— Moses 1:39