Below is an excerpt from Randall J. Brown’s book, Experiencing Christ: Your Personal Journey to the Savior (pp. 49-50). Experiencing Christ was published in 2009 by Cedar Fort, Inc. Brown shares our desperate need for a Savior and Redeemer to help us overcome the natural man. Brown belongs to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes inadvertently called the “Mormon Church”), and is a devoted follower and disciple of Jesus Christ.

Experiencing Our Weapons of War
"Rely on Him. Rely on Him heavily. Rely on Him forever." - Jeffrey R. HollandKing Benjamin [a prophet in the Book of Mormon] taught us, “The natural man is an enemy to God” (Mosiah 3:19). Until I was ready to take my Savior’s yoke upon me and enter into His mighty change of heart process, I was, in essence, fighting against the power of the Spirit. I was rejecting His invitation to surrender the fight and come to our Father’s table to partake of the feast. As I resisted the power of His spirit, I maintained my status as a natural man. I retained the weapons of war that kept me separated from God… Neal A. Maxwell said, “Some of us nevertheless feel as though we own ourselves, our time, our talents, and our possessions; these are signs of our self-sufficiency.”[1]

Each of us must see ourselves in our own carnal state and be willing to lay prostrate before the Master in complete surrender. Only then can He break our yokes of bondage. All those who heard King Benjamin “had viewed themselves in their own carnal state, even less than the dust of the earth. And they all cried aloud with one voice, saying: O have mercy, and apply the atoning blood of Christ that we may receive forgiveness of our sins” (Mosiah 4:2).

In the book of Alma [found in the Book of Mormon], we learn of [a people called the] Anti-Nephi-Lehies and [of] their conversion to Christ. Having been freed from the bondage of their many sins and having experienced life in Christ, they were so repulsed by the thought of returning to sin that they buried their weapons of war in the earth and made a covenant with the Lord never to take them up again— even at the peril of their lives. “And thus we see that, when these Lamanites were brought to believe and to know the truth, they were firm, and would suffer even unto death rather than commit sin; and thus we see that they buried their weapons of peace, or they buried the weapons of war, for peace” (Alma 24:19).

As we surrender our lives to Jesus Christ, we must also bury our weapons of war. We must bury our perfectionism, pride, and self-sufficiency. As paradoxical as it may seem, we must let go of our efforts to perfect ourselves and surrender that process to Him whose work and glory it is. We must allow Him to perform the work that only He can do. We must prostrate ourselves before our Savior, hand Him our hearts, and allow the Great Physician to perform the delicate surgery that only He has the expertise to perform. We must bury the vanity and unbelief that keeps us from experiencing Christ. There is no other way.

We must have Christ in our lives in order to receive true and lasting peace and happiness and to be able to lay down our “weapons of war.” Through Him all things are possible. I like a quote by a Mormon apostle, Jeffrey R. Holland, speaking particularly to mothers:

You can’t possibly do this alone, but you do have help. The Master of Heaven and Earth is there to bless you—He who resolutely goes after the lost sheep, sweeps thoroughly to find the lost coin, waits everlastingly for the return of the prodigal son. Yours is the work of salvation, and therefore you will be magnified, compensated, made more than you are and better than you have ever been as you try to make honest effort, however feeble you may sometimes feel that to be.

Remember… “Ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save” (2 Nephi 31:19).

Rely on Him. Rely on Him heavily. Rely on Him forever. And “press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope” (2 Nephi 31:20)… Like the woman who anonymously, meekly, perhaps even with hesitation and some embarrassment, fought her way through the crowd just to touch the hem of the Master’s garment, so Christ will say to the women who worry and wonder and sometimes weep over their responsibilit[ies]…, “Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole” (Holy Bible: Matthew 9:22). And it will make your children whole as well.[2]

Let us be humble and prayerful in all aspects of our lives—relying “wholly” upon Christ. As we do so we will be uplifted, strengthened, comforted, and ennobled. I invite you to learn more about Jesus Christ and what He has to offer you by meeting with Mormon missionaries—they can help, for they are representatives of our loving Savior Jesus Christ.

 


[1] Neal A. Maxwell, Not My Will, But Thine, 93.

[2] Jeffrey R. Holland, “Because She is a Mother,” Ensign, May 1997.

About ashley

Ashley Bell is a 22-year old wife, mother, BYU graduate, and member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Ashley loves to run, cook, garden, read, and most of all spend time with family and friends.

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