Rooted in Christ

A picture of clover growing in some grass

Have you ever had the opportunity to pull weeds?  One of the blessings of owning a home means that you get to help take care of the landscape surrounding your home, including the pulling of weeds.  In my limited experience I have discovered that some weeds pull out fairly easily because their roots are slender.  Other weeds come out only with much exertion because their roots are complex and firm.  After reading this talk by Elder Neil L. Andersen from the October 2010 General Conference, I pondered a little about the difference between these weeds and how it relates to my faith in Jesus Christ.  As I was pondering, I remembered the parable of the sower:

And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow;

And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:

Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:

And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.

And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:

But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold. (Matthew 13:3-8).

I like this parable because it illustrates for me the differences that people can have in their testimonies.  I like it because our Savior is teaching the importance of nourishing our testimony and faith.  Another reason that I like this parable is because the Lord Himself provides the interpretation later in the same chapter:

Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower.

When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.

But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it;

Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.

He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.

But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.  (Matthew 13:18-23).

In other words, if we let doubt or discouragement dictate our faith, then we will not rejoice in the promises our Savior has for us.  If we choose not to nourish the seed of faith, then we will never enjoy the fruits of eternity.  Alma also taught us this important principle in his famous discourse on faith (see Alma 32:27-43).  We need to choose to nourish our faith and learn to follow our Savior.  Let us choose to not let the cares or distractions of this world, or the persecution and tribulation the will come, deter us from building a relationship with the Redeemer of mankind and enjoying the associated blessings–such as joy in this life and never-ending happiness in the world to come (see Mosiah 2:41)

President Thomas S. Monson has warned, “Unless the roots of your testimony are firmly planted, it will be difficult for you to withstand the ridicule of those who challenge your faith…Your testimony, when constantly nourished, will keep you safe.” (“May You Have Courage,” Liahona and Ensign, May 2009, 126).  Are we listening to the warning voice of the man called of God in these latter days to guide us to safety?  We need to gain a firm testimony of the truth for ourselves so that we can withstand the “fiery darts of the wicked” (see Ephesians 6:16).

We all know of the things that we need to do in order to nourish our testimony.  Spending a little time each day “feasting upon the words of Christ” (2 Ne 32:3, see also this post) will help us to strengthen our faith in Jesus Christ.  Praying and actually opening our hearts to God is another way.  Whatever you do, please draw nearer to our Savior and garner the power that you need to withstand the evils of our day!  Have a wonderful week!

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