Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Drawing on the Powers of Heaven

This little gem was written by Grant Von Harrison and for a time, was included in missionary literature, which is where my perfect BIL came upon it. I'm quite convinced this book is a big part of the reason this particular BIL is perfect. This book clearly lays a foundation for a deeper and more perfect understanding of faith and sets forth a clear and organized way of moving yourself ahead spiritually, benefitting in every possible way, both spiritually and temporally, as you go.

So, I'm going to open up a discussion here. If you have the book, or can get your hands on it, read along and feel free to participate. It will be a worthwhile endeavor. Even if you don't have it, feel free to add your thoughts.

The first chapter talks about faith. The opening statement is:
"Generally, members of the Church do not have difficulty understanding the most basic aspects of faith, such as faith that God lives, that Jesus is the Christ, that there is life after death, or with a general faith in the overall plan of salvation. However, many people do have trouble understanding the specific kind of faith required to draw on the powers of heaven to help them be more successful in every facet in their lives." (1)

Basically, we believe in the things we are supposed to, but have a hard time remembering that every action is moved forward by Heavenly Father. When we incorporate this concept into our prayers, and recognize that we have the power to do all things by faith (2 Nephi 1:10), we can gain confidence that Heavenly Father wants to give us all the powers He possesses as long as we put forth the effort and faith to make it possible for Him to bless us.

The book uses the example of someone wanting to lose ten pounds. The faith required to lose ten pounds is different than the faith required to gain special assistance from the Lord. If a person wants to lose ten pounds, they must motivate themselves to action by having faith in the laws that determine weight loss (eat less, move more), resolve to follow those laws, and maintain a constant effort, motivated by faith in the laws that govern weight loss. But many times in our lives, we encounter circumstances that require help from the Lord in addition to resolve and determination on our part. Basically, what I got out of reading this part, is that we should not be afraid to ask for miracles and we should get used to seeing them used to answer our prayers. Which makes sense. Every prayer answered really is a miracle, isn't it? Miracles are the Lords way of letting us know He exists, how much He loves us and how His power is limitless.

The end of the Chapter asks us to explain what is meant by the powers of heaven. I take it to mean that the powers of heaven is the power of God, which can and should be summoned to help us during our mortal lives.


the sabra said...

shalom from a fellow sabra blogger :)

JD said...

I love this book too. I read it a couple of years ago. I need to dig it out and follow along with your discussions! thanks for posting this!

Asia said...

What is meant by the "Powers of Heaven?" "Any influence or power (inspiration, gift of the spirit, power of the priesthood) which is governed by God and opwerates in our behalf." Helping us be more successful in life since this power can compensate for human weaknesses. With it, our limitations become insignificant.

The first faith refers to having faith in the laws that determine weight loss and therfore motivation that person to action. But the second kind of faith is not only the "principle of action, bu the power also."

"What governs the powers of heaven as they relate to the achievement of righteous desires?" Faith. The Lord's hands are tied until you exercise faith. "Works without faith are dead." Faith as a principle of power. righteous living.

Page 13:"Who can exercise faith as a principle of power?" Those who live righteously, who "conform to the principles of truth that come from God."

I can call upon God's power to help me keep the house clean, to spread joy, to act with love and patience. These are my daily endevors that aren't accomplished by me very well on my own.

momofalltrades said...

Thank you for you comments Asia! You might find from reading my blog that my attention to long term projects is seriously lacking! LOL
You are so right about calling on the Lord to help you with the day to day struggles and imperfections that you deal with. As we work toward perfecting ourselves, the Lord will help us with all things, large and small, if we "do things His way" so to speak.

The Pikes said...

Okay - Can I *please* join in on these discussions? I LOVE this book and was moments ago thinking that I needed to start reading it again - this time more deeply.

Hoorah for Israel.