The other night as I was driving home from a meeting, I looked off to the left. The sun had completely set and as a result, everything was pitch black other than weak light puddled directly under street lamps. Everything, that is, except a little clearing near the edge of the woods to my left.
For some odd reason, the owner of that property had planted a regal Robellini palm tree on the edge of the thickly knitted trees. I wouldn’t have seen the graceful thing if it weren’t for several spotlights aimed directly at it, bathing it in an iridescent glow.
I slowed down in my car as I passed it. There it stood, tree and highlighting it. Eventually, I could no longer linger near it, being on the street and all in my car, and so I passed by it and was soon on my way.
But I continued to ponder the sight. The brilliant pool of light that surrounded that regal, three palmed tree resonated within me. It felt distinctly placed in my mind. That is when something occurred to me. We, too, as Latter-day Saints are intended by the Lord to function in the same way.
Confusion exists in this world, whether from man’s brutality to man (or to women, child, animal, etc.) or to doctrines that clang, clash and contradict about God and who He is, what His purposes are for this little blue planet and His children on it.
We as Latter-day Saints, or Mormons as so many call us, believe that God uses prophets to teach us, guide us, and comfort us during this sojourn on earth. There is light and clarity in their minds – and in ours, if we choose to hearken to our prophet and church leaders. One only need attend the semi-annual General Conference to feel the light and warmth of the comfort and light the Lord extends.
At Conference, we replenish our souls with the light of Christ. In fact, I’ve often wondered how others could not call us Christian. All it would take is to sit through the eight hours of General Conference twice a year to help strengthen the individual and help inform otherwise.
For example, in this last conference these were some of the topics covered: “The Only True God and Jesus Christ Whom He Hath Sent,” “Nourished by the Good Word of God,” and “Feed My Sheep.” Other topics were, “What Latter-day Saint Women Do Best: Stand Strong and Immovable” (a bit like that Robellini palm tree), “Nourished by the Good Word of God,” and “Live by Faith and Not by Fear.”
How could others accuse us of evil when we are taught by speakers to love children and serve them (Sister Julie Beck, “Mothers Who Know”), speakers who teach us that our smallest choices during life matter in God’s eyes (Elder Christoffel Golden Jr, “Small and Simple Things”) and that personal purity is absolutely essential as a Christian (Elder David A. Bednar, “Clean Hands and a Pure Heart”)?
As I passed that small, but regal Robellini palm tree last week, I thought on the gospel of Jesus Christ and how as Mormons we seek to apply it in our lives. The world may be lost in a darkening “woods” of confusing thoughts and blackened actions, but when we follow the Savior, we light up the darkness for those around us.
If you’ve not had a chance yet to listen to the most recent General Conference talks, I invite you to visit the LDS.org page. The Robellini palm tree may have been only “one” near that vast woods, but the impact of the light attending it was tremendous. May we do the same for our brothers and sisters around us by living the gospel of Jesus Christ and sharing His light. Each individual may be only one, but the light and impact that comes from the one can be wonderful.