When Nephi wrote a portion of the 1st book of Nephi, he was actually much older and wrote from memory. It got me thinking…what would I say about my past? There are certain times in my life that I can remember everything about the situation- what I was wearing, what the temperature was, what I smelled. Some things are quite a blur, and some memories are forgotten.
Our Experience Shapes Us
There are huge, momentous occasions, situations, and trials that I can easily recall. More often than not, the feelings that accompanied those situations can make me re-live that very moment. I remember vividly how I felt about others who could get pregnant, who were able to get married, who felt impressed to go on a mission. How quick I was to judge people and even quicker to justify why I judged them.
I began being rude to many people. It didn’t matter what you did. I didn’t like going to church. I was sick and tired of hearing the same ole people talking and their same stupid stories. There were the criers, the one’s who seemed to know everything. The one’s that ALWAYS had “been there and done that,” and the ones who were the poster children for “Molly Mormon” and “Peter Priesthood.” I was NOT nice, and I didn’t care. I was in my own world with my own problems, and I didn’t have anyone to talk to that understood.
Getting on the Strait Path will Straighten You
Over the years, I have come to realize my need to stay close to Heavenly Father. I HATE waiting, and I HATE not knowing what I should do. I HATE wondering if I am doing it right and what the end game is. But when I don’t talk to Him, I feel much more lost than if I am talking to Him.
I have noticed as well that I am not as hard on others as I used to be. Sure, I get annoyed just like anyone would occasionally, but I quickly can let it go because I have realized that I need all the help I can get. They probably need it too. It seems that the more I learn and try to grow, the more aware of my faults and imperfections I become.
Is it a coincidence that after living a life of judgement and then turning to humility that I realized the straight and narrow was never straight?
It is strait. It’s just not a straight line.
One meaning of strait in the scriptures is “narrow.” Really, it could read “narrow and narrower path.” How had I missed that before? How had I not caught that or remembered that? It really doesn’t matter if I learned it before, because I needed it now.
The Path Narrows
I realized that as we walk on the path, it becomes more and more narrow towards exaltation. It has to because we have to become better people than we were 5 years ago, 5 months ago, 5 days ago, or even 5 minutes ago. The road narrows and we realize that we have more and more imperfections that we must focus on and work to resolve. We work past the large imperfections and are able to focus on the relatively smaller things. All of it is in an effort for us to grow and improve.
The judgement on others falls to the wayside because we each realize just how much we need Him. We realize just how much we need the Atonement of Jesus Christ in our lives. We realize just how much we need His help to guide us moment to moment.
My path has become ever so slightly narrow, and yet that tiny shift has caused tremendous changes in my life. It helps me to see that my path will have twists and turns. It won’t be straight, but it will be narrow and narrower.