Yes, another "thoughts from mass" post :)
Advent starts today. That's like the four Sundays leading up to Christmas or something like that. I like Advent. Have you ever seen those wreaths with three purple candles and one pink one? Those are for Advent. They count down the weeks till Christmas. The priest gets to wear purple robes for mass! We're all pretty sick of the green ones by now. Green robes are for "ordinary time," when nothing special is happening. It lasts forever.
Anywho. Growth. That's what today's homily was about. A homily is like when the priest gives a talk, after he reads part of one of the gospels.
All of us are always growing. Not physically, but spiritually. And sometimes (usually), growth is slow and painful. But we need to keep growing. That's what He sent us here to do!
Some scriptures about growing:
D&C 50:40 Behold, ye are little children and ye cannot bear all things now; ye must grow in grace and in the knowledge of the truth.
Alma 32, about planting the seed of faith and allowing it to grow by nourishing it, and then you can see that it is good.
31 Another parable put he forth unto tvhem, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field:
32 Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof.
D&C 82:14 For Zion must increase in beauty, and in holiness; her borders must be enlarged; her stakes must be strengthened; yea, verily I say unto you, Zion must arise and put on her beautiful garments.
Quotes from various talks:
"Developing spirituality and attuning ourselves to the highest influences of godliness is not an easy matter. It takes time and frequently involves a struggle. It will not happen by chance, but is accomplished only through deliberate effort and by calling upon God and keeping his commandments........The place to begin is here. The time to start is now. The length of our stride need be but one step at a time. God, who has, 'designed our happiness,' will lead us along even as little children, and we will by that process approach perfection."
"An infant's body is tiny, and its spiritual capacities are undeveloped. While the body may reach the peak of its maturation in a few years, the development of the spirit may never reach the limit of its capacity, because there is no end to progression."
"Growing up spiritually requires faith, great diligence, and patience.......Growing up spiritually requires us to see beyond our own desires and to enlarge our way of seeing things. We not only have to let go of our selfishness but sometimes let go of things we want very badly to come to understand our Heavenly Father's point of view."
We are always growing. I think that's awesome. There is no "point of perfection" that one can reach and suddenly know all there is to know and no longer need to grow spiritually. Nope, there's always something else beyond where we are. And sometimes that's a discouraging thought. But since there isn't an Earthly destination, we can enjoy the journey that much more :) we just need to grow and endure!