Thursday, May 16, 2013

The nature of blessings

This morning I woke up early with a thought about blessings which was prompted by an experience I had years ago. When our children were living in Utah and Idaho I had a thought that stuck with me, and remains with me today whenever I am 'tempted' to do something I shouldn't. (by tempted I mean that the thought comes into my mind, not that I am going to act upon it) We were driving through Nevada frequently. If you know anything about Nevada you know that it is legal to gamble there; pretty much in any fashion. You discover, on a drive through that state, that slot machines are pretty much everywhere. Everywhere. For example if you go into a gas station, they are there. Sometimes those "in your face" temptations put thoughts into your head, like, "it's not a big deal to might even win some money to help your kids out, or your mom, or even pay down your mortgage", etc, etc.

I can say that I did not succumb, though I was tempted. The thought that came to me at that time was kind of interesting considering it was the thought of more money that was driving this temptation. The thought was, "What blessings would you be robbing yourself of if you were to gamble, and even to win?" Robbing. Hmm. Now, I know that I am a reasonably intelligent person, but can honestly say that I am not that intelligent. That  thought came directly from the Spirit, to help me, and others in my life, to not succumb to temptations. It continues to work to help me.

Now, onto the thought I had this morning. What if blessings were measured in monetary value? What if when we did something right we received money. Say we chose to be kind to someone when we were tempted not to, and by doing so money magically appeared in our checking account? Or we decided not to smoke, drink or do drugs; and then money was deposited into our account. Supposing it went something like this:

Obeyed word of wisdom when choice was put there not to: +$1,000
Paid tithing, even though it was a hardship: +$2000
Served in calling; did home or visiting teaching for month: +$2,000
Served in temple (baptism, initiatories, sealing, endowment, or as temple worker): +$5,000
Played with children: +$5,000

Can you hear the cha-ching? I can! Well, you get the idea. I wonder how many people in the world would choose to do the right then?

Then, on the flip side, I thought, what if we chose not to do the right and money was deducted from our checking account? This is what that might look like:

Told a lie: -$1000 - 10,000 (depending on severity)
Disobeyed word of wisdom, and got someone else to: -$10,000
Gambled: - $5,000
Yelled at a family member: -$15,000

Again, you get the idea. I'm just kind of throwing out numbers, but think of the things that you do in your life. Are you robbing yourself of any of the blessings that you want you or your family to have? We lose so much when we choose to do the wrong, that is why I evaluated the monetary part high on those choices.

Anyway, that is the thought I had this morning that I thought I would share with the few of you that read my blog. I hope it helps you as much as it has helped me throughout the years. I truly am grateful for the blessings I have in my life. Some of them are monetary, for which I am grateful; but the blessings that are eternal, those are priceless.

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