i am going to a gathering of women next weekend. we were counselors for a girls youth program many, many moons ago. they are women of God and are who i want to be. i am so excited to be with them!
one thing we are doing is bringing a note with a favorite quote or scripture that reminds us to have faith in Jesus Christ. i have been thinking of a few options, but one that is on my mind a lot is from the Doctrine and Covenants. this is a book of the revelations Joseph Smith received as he restored the Gospel of Jesus Christ. just now did i realize that this revelation was give to Joseph here in Salem, Massachusetts! that must be another reason i love this verse.
Doctrine and Covenants 111:11
Therefore, be ye as
awise as serpents and yet without bsin; and I will order all things for your cgood, as fast as ye are able to receive them. Amen.
i have loved that fact that the Lord is just anxiously waiting to literally dump me in blessings - and that He is already dumping them upon me - i just need a place in my life and my heart to receive them. as i reflect on the past few years, i am so grateful to be in Boston, on my own. there are so many things i have been able to process, habits i have created, and relationships i have formed that i know have made me able to receive more.
the part of this verse about being "as wise as serpents" has troubled me. Satan is the serpent. why is the Lord wanting me to be like Satan?? last week i looked up the phrase on google. and found a beautiful explanation:
Jesus said that we should be wise as serpents, but how are serpents wise?
Genesis 3:1 says that the serpent was more "crafty" (ARUM) than any of the beasts of the field, and the same word is used a number of times in Proverbs, often translated as "prudent." A crafty man conceals what he knows (12:23). The crafty man acts knowingly, not impulsively (13:16). The crafty man is not gullible but considers his steps (14:15). Crafty men see evil coming and step aside to avoid it (22:3; 27:12). A related word is used in 15:5, where the prudent accept correction. These are some ways to imitate the "craftiness" of serpents as we minister as sheep in a world of wolves (Matthew 10:16).
the words i would add are aware, conscious, and deliberate. i feel that i am learning to be more aware of my weaknesses and my strengths. how else will i be able to know where there are chinks in my armor? how else will i know how i can serve effectively. it makes me excited that the more conscious and deliberate and aware i am of myself and the world, the faster the blessings of heaven will pour upon me. how incredible is that?? (*this makes me think about the balance of being selfish and selfless. from my personal experiences, i don't know that we teach enough that it is okay - and even necessary - to be selfish and care and protect our time and energy. and give freely to others. love and embrace others free of judgement all while protecting self. )
look at this serpent just being STILL. deliberately choosing a location to be, deliberately choosing a time, deliberately choosing what prey to take to nourish it's family. in the fight against Satan, i want to be a very, very wise serpent!!