BYU (Brigham Young University) is operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, often mistakenly called the “Mormon Church.” BYU students take nearly a semester of spiritually uplifting, stimulating religion classes.
In this series (see below), students enrolled in scripture study classes have shared their thoughts, insights, and reflections on the Book of Mormon in the form of letters to someone they know. We invite you to take a look at their epiphanies and discoveries as they delve into the scriptures.
In publishing these, we fulfill their desire to speak to all of us of the relevance, power and beauty of the Book of Mormon, a second witness of Jesus Christ and complement to the Bible. The Book of Mormon includes the religious history of a group of Israelites who settled in ancient America. (The names they use are those of prophets who taught the Book of Mormon peoples to look forward to the coming of Christ—Nephi, Lehi, Alma, Helaman, and other unfamiliar names. We hope those names will become more familiar to you as you read their inspiring words and feel the relevance and divinity of their messages through these letters.)
Let us know if you’d like to receive your own digital copy of the Book of Mormon, and/or if these messages encourage and assist you spiritually as well.
Mormon Reflections on the Word: Keeping the Commandments
This week in my Book of Mormon class, we’ve been discussing the war chapters in Alma. As we contrasted the two leaders of the opposing factions, we saw how Moroni, chief captain of the Nephites and a very righteous man (reference Alma 48:17), was so strongly contrasted with Amalickiah, the ex-patriot Nephite who became the king of the Lamanites. More specifically, we saw how Moroni was always preparing his people for the next wave of attacks in order to save their lives, whereas Amalickiah was only concerned with achieving his goal. Often we consider the things to be learned spiritually from Moroni and Amalickiah, but I felt that said learning was not what I needed to hear at the time in the class. So, I began to consider how it applied in my life, which at the moment I feel is more temporal. Right now, I’m finding that I’m always extremely busy with work and school, and often I don’t find time to get everything I need to done. The only free day I have is Saturday, so I’ve found that if I don’t take care of my homework a week in advance, I won’t have time to do it during the week. Hence, there is much to be learned from the example of Moroni. He didn’t wait for the hardships to come before dealing with them; instead, he would foresee and prepare for hardships that he was sure would come. I feel that we should do the same. We should prepare ourselves for the hardships and difficulties to come, and we should manage our time wisely in order to accomplish our highest priorities.
But, on the spiritual end of things, it is always important to prepare ourselves spiritually as well. God should always be a priority in life, whether it be through going to the temple, or reading the scriptures daily, or attending our meetings on Sunday; if we procrastinate our other activities, these will be absent from our lives. And since those are the most important things, they are the ones we should least forget, and the ones that we should schedule first. However, since there isn’t anyone checking up with us on those assignments, and we don’t see the immediate disadvantage to not reading the scriptures that we easily see for not going to work, for instance, we are more prone to forget about Him. I exhort you, therefore, to remember God always in your lives, and always prepare for the hardships to come, because such is life. I know that God lives and loves us.