Monday, September 20

Understanding the Gospel Ideal

In the Church, I've always learned that families can be together forever. It always seemed to me like a promise of "happily ever after." But that doesn't tell the whole story. Living the gospel blesses families. Families are essential for salvation, and marriage between man and woman is divinely instituted of God. All of that is true. But, all too often, the ideal comes later, or in a different form, than I first expected.

Being attracted to guys is a perfect example. If I never fall in love with a girl, I may never marry in this life. I may never have the opportunity to have children or raise a family or find someone with whom to be sealed in the temple. Does that mean that the ideal doesn't apply to me? For a while, I thought so. And then I realized that the "ideal" in the gospel was not having a perfect family that sits on the front row. The gospel ideal simply outlines the best possible circumstances for each son or daughter of God. Ideal does not mean equal. But it does mean that I will receive all the blessings that God has promised if I am willing to keep His commandments.

Looking at my life, I'm grateful that God loves me enough to allow me to live my own trials. To understand how the gospel interfaces in my life. To learn my own lessons and earn the right to say that I can love and understand people... To gain a testimony of the gospel ideal.


  1. There is always hope!

    God does allow you to live your own trials, to see what you'll do with them, how you'll respond to them.

    Life isn't about achieving the "ideal" of the perfect family sitting in the front row - it's about what we do with what we've been given.

  2. Beck: I agree. Thanks for your comment. There is always hope. No matter what circumstances we have in life, there is hope. Do I want a perfect family? Yeah. My family growing up was pretty perfect, and I want the same environment for my own future children.

    And while I may not actually reach that ideal, striving for it creates the ideal situation for me - a mix of blessings, trials, and everything else to help me become who I need to be. Teaching the ideal, believing in the ideal, striving for the ideal gives us incredible strength... because the Lord promises that, if we are faithful, it will happen. We'll look back and realize that the circumstances he designed were ideal.

  3. We create our own definition of "ideal" with the help of the Lord, and He will bless us as we remain faithful to the ideal that He has designed for us. And the good part? We know that, in time, we will cross the veil into the Ideal.

    Caps intended.

    The Lord will bless you even more than those of us who are "the same" (I just commented on another post of yours and I'm feeling full of quotation marks tonight, sorry - I blame the baby who is up sick) because you had the extra courage and faith to plow through.

  4. You are so insightful. I have learned a lot from you today. Thanks.

  5. I struggled a lot with this when my husband decided that he didn't want to believe the church was true anymore. I worried about what was going to happen to me. Would I still be able to make it to the Celestial Kingdom? Would my kids be born in the Covenant?

    I have faith that the Lord will take care of me as long as I keep my covenants. Don't forget about the Millennium, with Satan bound hopefully these trials and hardships will be lifted and we'll be able to continue to build the kingdom of God.


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