Friday, April 15, 2011

A Broken Bow

Why do bad things happen to good people? Now that is a question for the soul that I have often pondered to myself. Do bad things happen in my life? You bet they do. Daily. I'm so grateful for these experiences. I know that they all happen for a reason. Everyone goes through difficult times. However, what we do because of them defines who we are. When it comes to trials, there are no accidents. I take comfort knowing that we will not be tried above that which we are able to bear (1 Cor 10:13). As I studied the scriptures this morning I discovered the answer to that question of the soul.
I was reading in the Book of Mormon about Nephi and an experience he had while he was traveling through the wilderness with his family. Back then there were no Safeways nearby so they had to hunt and forage for their food. The way they hunted was by bow and arrow. No guns or lazer scopes back then. Nephi had the best bow though. His was made from "fine steel". His brothers bows were pretty worn out. They relied on the use of his bow to get food. Without his bow they were stranded in the wilderness without any way of getting anything to eat. One day while hunting something unfortunate happened. Nephi broke his bow.

Why would God allow that to happen? Now they cant get any food and they'll starve. Was he doing anything wrong? Not at all. In fact the family was doing everything right. They followed the Lord when He told them to leave Jerusalem (1 Nephi 2). They went back to retrieve the plates (1 Nephi 3). They left all their posessions behind to follow the Lord. Something bad had happened to good people.

Nephi reccounts how they reacted "And it came to pass that Laman and Lemuel and the sons of Ishmael did begin to murmur exceedingly, because of their sufferings and afflictions in the wilderness; and also my father began to murmur against the Lord his God; yea, and they were all exceedingly sorrowful, even that they did murmur against the Lord." (1 Nephi 16: 20) On the other hand, here is how Nephi reacted: "And it came to pass that I, Nephi, did make out of wood a bow, and out of a straight stick, an arrow; wherefore, I did arm myself with a bow and an arrow, with a sling and with stones. And I said unto my father: Whither shall I go to obtain food?" (1 Nephi 16:23). Nephi was then shown where to go to obtain food and he "did slay wild beasts" and obtained food for his family.

We have two choices when responding to bad things. One is to murmur and complain. The other is to buckle up and act. We decide what happens as a result of the trials that are placed in front of us. Had Nephi and his family all murmured and complained they would have perished in the wilderness. However, because Nephi chose to remain calm and did what he could with what was given the family lived to reach the promised land.

Yes bad things happen to good people. How they react is what defines them as good people. There is opposition in all things. Just because we choose the right does not mean we are exempt from trial and sorrow. We are however entitled to divine help and will recieve it as we act in faith to overcome adversity. Through our trials we are refined.

I bear my testimony that the Book of Mormon answers the Questions of the Soul. I know that it is the word of God as is the Bible. I know that through it we can recieve guidance in our own lives and we can overcome our trials. I know that it testifies of Jesus Christ as our Savior and Redeemer. Through him we can overcome all things.

Order a free Book of Mormon for yourself so that the questions you have in your soul can be answerd.

1 comment:

  1. I am so grateful for all of the "refining" moments in my life. Trials aren't fun, but they are so worth it. The growth that comes through trials is remarkable!