I was reminded a couple of weeks ago about how easy it can be for us to return to old habits even after having some incredible experiences and a period of miraculous change in ourselves where prior to that change or experience we thought it was hopeless or impossible to change. Why is it that we return to those habits, and fall back into the life we once lived? Think about your life and your experiences… what changes have you made, and what things do you continue to struggle with?
A couple of weeks ago we had a man give a talk at church where he shared some insights from a talk given by Elder Jeffrey R Holland titled “The First Great Commandment.” To summarize what he said, he shared insights into what happened with the apostles after Christ was crucified. Peter and others returned back to the life they were living before as fisherman. They had had miraculous experiences with the Savior, and now that He was gone, they appreciated what they were able to experience, but went back to the old way of living.
The resurrected Christ comes and after He is revealed to them to be the Savior, Christ uses the opportunity to teach them, especially Peter, something that helps them change their life permanently. He asks Peter three times if Peter loves Him. Peter replies every time that he does love Him, and that the Lord knows it. Elder Holland then with a little elaboration shares that the Lord basically said something like this to Peter: “Then why are you here? Why are we back on this same shore, by these same nets, having this same conversation. Wasn’t it obvious then and isn’t obvious now that if I want fish, I can get fish? What I need, Peter, are disciples-and I need them forever. Did not my life and my love touch your hearts more deeply than this?”
Elder Holland then relates this to us and how the Lord asks us “Do you love me?” And we may respond, “Yea, Lord, thou knowest that I love thee.” And He may remind us that the crowing characteristic of love is always loyalty. Will we allow His love to change us forever? Will we give Him our hearts? Are we remaining loyal to Him, and if not, let us repent and turn to Him again and again.
I really like the this saying: “The crowing characteristic of love is always loyalty.” Oh, how I wish all that are married could apply this to their marriage and the love that spouse have for each other. Or for families to apply this to their love for their parents or brothers and sisters.
I know that we can keep God first in our lives by loving Him and keeping the first great commandment to love God with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our strength, and with all our mind. It is in our daily actions, or daily habits. If we are lacking that love, we can change, we can do something differently and by doing so we can become someone different. We can become the person we hope to be.
Give yourself to The Captain of Your Soul and receive the blessings that are constantly being offered to you, and see the tender mercies He places in your life each and every day.
-From A loving brother