Friday, July 12, 2013
From Hugh Nibley, The World and the Prophets (1987), 266-267.
If the world is a dark and dreary place, it is because we prefer it that way, for there is nothing in the world that can keep a man from joy if joy is what he wants. Direct access to our Father in heaven through prayer is always open. But right there we draw back; as soon as we gain a distant glimpse of it, we are not so sure whether we want this joy. It is altogether too much for us to bear. We must learn by degrees to live with it. It is not strange that we are afraid of so great and overpowering a thing—that we are overawed by the feeling that all this is too good for us. The fact is that it is too good for us—much too good, and the message of the prophets and the Church to us here is that we must awake and prepare ourselves as good and faithful servants to enter into the joy of the Lord. We are not ready yet. It was the glory of the Lord shining round about them that made the shepherds sore afraid, so that the angel had to reassure them that he was bringing only joyful news, good tidings of great joy, for he had been sent to announce, as all the prophets have, the coming to earth of the Redeemer. That has been the joyful message of all the prophets. That we may come to support not the burden of great suffering, but the much greater impact of limitless joy is the purpose of our training here. "In the world ye shall have tribulation," says the Lord to his prophets, "but be of good cheer: I have overcome the world."