Where did I come from?” is a common question asked by those seeking for something greater than the bright, shiny and often destructive things the world has to offer. Mormons actually have the answer to this question, or rather, the gospel of Jesus Christ provides the answer.
In premortality, or the place in which we lived prior to this life of mortality, we were spirit children of our Father in Heaven. We lived, we loved, we laughed, we learned and we grew. We grew as far as we could in our spirit state. Elder Neal A. Maxwell, an Apostle of Jesus Christ from July 24, 1981 to July 24, 2004, said,
“Early in the Restoration, by translation and revelation, numerous plain and precious truths appeared in fairly rapid succession. This occurred through Joseph Smith, the “choice seer.” (2 Nephi 3:6.) As when dinner guests arrive nearly all at once, Joseph, as host, received, welcomed, and duly noted each truth. Only later was there time and matured perceptivity to see their relationships and the antiquity of their credentials.
“Among these plain and precious truths was the doctrine of the premortal existence of mankind. (See 1 Nephi 13:39, 40.) Early on, Joseph received much concerning this truth, but just as the revelations concerning it came incrementally, so did Joseph’s understanding.
One of the “plain and precious things” long ago “kept back” or “taken away” (1 Nephi 13:34, 40), this enormously important truth did not reach the Holy Bible in an abundant degree, though it is surely there. (See Jeremiah 1:5; Ephesians 1:4–5; 2 Timothy 1:9.) It was briefly extant after the original Apostles. Alas, however, just as Paul foresaw, the time soon came when Church members did not “endure sound doctrine,” including this one. (See 2 Timothy 4:3.)
With the later disapprovals of councils, the doctrine of premortal existence demonstrably was not a doctrine which could have been reestablished by research. The doctrine does not abuse logic, for “truth is reason,” especially “truth eternal”, but is more than logic alone can fully support. (See Hymns, 1985, no. 292.) It could only come from restoration by modern revelation. It was certainly not abroad in the land of America until Joseph Smith’s articulations. (Elder Neal A. Maxwell, “Premortality, a Glorious Reality,” Ensign, Nov 1985, 15)
We did not come from nothing. Order and truth eternal dictate the heavens, for God would not be God if He broke eternal laws. And so we lived before we came and now is the time of our mortal probation. We had grown as far as we could grow . . . and now, here we are.
Do the fruits of your labors show you to be a son or daughter of God? Are you a true disciple of Jesus Christ in thought, action and voice? Do you fan that divine spark within you into a flame or have you completely blown it out? That divine spark can be reignited, Jesus Christ paid the price for that to be so through the Atonement.