I spend quite a bit of time thinking about the great plan of happiness opposite the awful plan of misery. Here we are, “in the middle,” with agency – the right to choose, and we know a lot about the consequences of our choices. We ARE that we might have JOY – we EXIST in order that we might experience JOY! And that’s the goal of the great plan of happiness. There is fierce opposition. We’re taught there must be opposition in all things. Shooot. I’m sure we can all feel it. Pretty much all the time. The tug of Zion opposite the tug of the world and worldliness. And if we are alert and aware, we can discern the differences, and the consequences. We know how we feel.
Here’s one way I try to “illustrate” it. Let’s have 2 columns. The one on the right (because we are attempting to Choose The Right… CTR) is headed by the word HAPPINESS. The column on the left is headed by the word MISERY. And we could draw a “stick figure” in between – that’s us – that’s you, and that’s mee, and we are “bombarded” with choices our whole life. LOTS of choices every single day. OK – we might write the word OPPOSITION in the middle… right there near where we drew ourselves. Let’s add some words in each column, and then we’re going to have to think/ponder about the reason they are pretty much “exact OPPOSITES.” And we can even be increasingly good at figuring out the CONSEQUENCES.
Under HAPPINESS let’s write “Our Heavenly Father’s Plan.” It has names other than the great plan of happiness, but we’ll stick with that description for now. Under MISERY let’s write “What’s-his-no-face” (representing the one without a body who seeks for everyone to be as miserable as he is … not a great plan, is it). Now let’s write the word FAITH underneath HAPPINESS. And you may already have guessed what I’m suggesting under the other column: DOUBT. Yes… doubt. By now you may be forging ahead without any suggestions from me (which would be an indication you’re thinking! You’re pondering! I love it!). Next under HAPPINESS how about OPTIMISM. And you’re right: under MISERY let’s put PESSIMISM.
From now on I’ll just list two words, and you’ll know where they go. And you can continue making your list as long as you want. Just remember to go back and PONDER what you’ve written, and carefully consider what your choices – your exercise of AGENCY – can bring into your heart, your soul, your life. Here we go (I’ll just suggest a few more, and then OFF YOU GO!):
GRATITUDE / COMPLAINING. LIGHT / DARKNESS. GOOD / EVIL. Does all of this seem too “black and white?” Well… we can consider the space in between the two columns. Kind of “misty,” isn’t it (can you see that?… or imagine that?)… things get kind of blurred. Sometimes we may have to think hard to decide which choice is the right one for us. We may need some meaningful experiences with prayer – with communicating with our Heavenly Father and seeking His guidance.
Here are some more possibilities: LOVE / INDIFFERENCE (you might write HATE, and that’s a “ponderable”). PEACE / ANXIETY. THOUGHT-FULL / THOUGHT-LESS. Can you tell I could go on and on (and have)? This has been, and continues to be, an interesting, meaningful thing for me to focus on from time to time. I feel like I’ve given you some “homework;” hope you don’t mind. Let me know what you come up with. Have a wonderful Sabbath Day! Love, MEE