Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Key to Receiving God's Image in Our Countenances

As I read the scriptures, it appears to me that Christ didn't accept His part of the Atonement because He wanted to get glory; He left the issue of reward in the hands of His father - no strings attached. He did it because He loved us - pure and simple. He showed that love by laying down His own life for us - by becoming a "minister" and a "preacher". He didn't do it for a personal reward; He did it for our reward. 

Frankly, I don't think we will gain an eternal reward by trying to earn an eternal reward. I think we will receive an eternal reward when we quit trying to earn it and focus instead on helping others in whatever way we can - when we end up forgetting about being rewarded and simply love and serve and obey for the sheer joy of doing so and seeing the results in the lives of others. We won't be "given" anything; rather, we will be changed into a condition acceptable to Him. In other words, we will become something - and that something will be Christ-like and godly.

I think we will not be perfect (complete, whole and fully developed) until we can act for our Savior in the "at-one-ment" of others (individually and as a community) - in the process of relieving their suffering, taking their pain and misery from them, bringing them joy and comfort, caring for them in a real and powerful and practical way, and empowering them to do so for others (individually and as a community).

In other words, I believe we receive His image in our countenances most fully by living and loving and serving as He did.  Sometimes we focus so much on his death and resurrection and "godhood" that we improperly devalue his life and "humanity" - but it is that life and humanity that we can emulate and that can engrave his image into our very being. 


Doug Towers said...


I like the post.

I would like to add some thoughts in regard its scope.

Firstly while he had to love us greatly to perform such a painful process, the Scriptures seem to me to point to his actions being done out of service and (particularly) love to the Father - thy will, not my will. He seems to have his focus there.

Secondly, while I completely agree with your emphasis on doing things out of love from the heart, we must additionally not leave aside our duty to our knowledge and our missionary work (placing the spiritual service above the physical service).

Apart from those thoughts I think its brilliant stuff.

ji said...

The Lord taught us that the first shall be last, and the last shall be first -- and also that he who seeks to save his own soul will lose it, but he who loses his life in the service of others will save it.

The Lord taught that the weightier matters should not be overlooked, not leaving the other undone.

Anonymous said...

i'm getting you here, beautifully articulated-can i get this on a fridge magnet?

The older I get the less interested i am in someone's spiritual hoo-ha and the more interested I am in their ability to love,particularly their nearest and dearest,and those for whom they have stewardship.