I believe our ancestor and descendant relationships are so important and eternal. I have been thinking about this a lot in connection with your talk last week in which you pointed out the fact that Lehi and Sariah's family was somewhat dysfunctional and that the same can be said for all families. Adam and Eve, Noah, the brother of Jared, Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebekah, and Jacob and Rachel, etc.
The questions to which this observation leads for me are: Why did God not put extremely functional people together in families, and less functional people together, etc., across a spectrum of functionality, so that people could always associate with others with similar characteristics and values in their families? And, why when God has started or restarted a civilization does He always seem to start from the beginning with a dysfunctional family?
I believe there are too many answers to these questions to go into detail now, but one thought I have on the second question is that the family is so fundamental to God's plan that He will even start with a family that has problems rather than any other organization. In ancient times the family was the core religious, political, economic, military, and educational organization. Everything was done through and by the family, even care for those outside the family who lived in the area, or the strangers in the land.
The world always strays away from this ideal and from the importance of the family, but this gradual rejection of the fundamental role of the family due to the precepts and wisdom of men never leads to improvement, and in the end always leads to destruction. A thought I have on the first question is that life is eternal, and we are linked very purposefully to our ancestors and posterity. We associate for mutual benefit before this life, during this life, and will continue to have association and influence after this life in ways that are intricately designed by an all knowing Father for our happiness.
As I think of all my ancestors about whom I have some knowledge I envision them woven together in a beautiful way, and part of this is due to the fact that I do have some limited knowledge of my family's association after this life, which is beautiful and sacred to me. This knowledge of family association after death that I have involves family members as benefactors and beneficiaries rather than involving other associations and organizations outside of family.
As is anyone's, mine is an ancestry composed of a very diverse mix of people who left mortality at different stages in their possession of spiritual knowledge, development of characteristics, reception of ordinances, and relative states of misery or happiness, and I believe this affords wonderful blessings for family members continuing to work with each other to comfort and to heal, and to progress in happiness through receiving the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
I love you. John"
As I mentioned yesterday, each day this week of family history I am giving away some smaller journaling prizes. Each prize consists of a journal, stamps and washi tape... a little something to help you get started writing your own personal history. To enter please leave a comment about the post below. All winners will be announced Monday January 26, 2015.
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