It is often difficult to explain feelings and impressions; even more difficult is to describe the confirmation of eternal truths. In spite of this I shall try to explain a truth I learned today, not only by the words that were spoken, but the impressions I felt as they were spoken.
It is the practice in an LDS sacrament meeting that congregation members are asked to speak on specific topics. Each week one or two members will research and prayerfully consider the assigned topic and share a talk for thirty minutes in sacrament meeting. Today, J.J. Hamblin and his wife were asked to speak on Faith & Repentance. Both did a wonderful job teaching from the scriptures and sharing personal experiences. In the final part of J.J.’s talk he shared the following regarding the need to be obedient now and not failing to repent of our disobedience to those commandments we are given.
“Allow me to take a slight tangent to set up this final point:
A ray of light from the sun takes approximately 8 minutes to travel from the sun to us here on the earth
Light travels at the speed of 186,000 miles per second
And it still takes 8 minutes to reach us from the sun
Scientist describe a “light year” as the distance that light can travel in a year traveling at the rate of 186,000 miles per second
The Milky Way galaxy that our solar system is a part of is 100,000 light years in diameter
That means, if you were in a spaceship traveling at the speed of light, it would take you 100,000 years to cross the galaxy
Furthermore, the Milky Way galaxy has 100 million stars in it
Many of which almost certainly generate solar systems just like ours
With worlds just like ours within them
Now, if that seems big,
The known universe contains at least 10 billion galaxies
Each of which probably contain 100 million stars, just like the Milky Way galaxy
And many of those stars no doubt generate solar systems like ours (The Life and Teachings of Jesus & His Apostles, pp. 9-10)
When thinking of this scientific data, the words of God to Moses begin to be understood:
“And worlds without number have I created; and I also created them for mine own purpose; and by the Son I created them, which is mine Only Begotten.
But only an account of this earth, and the inhabitants thereof, give I unto you. For behold, there are many worlds that have passed away by the word of my power. And there are many that now stand, and innumerable are they unto man; but all things are numbered unto me, for they are mine and I know them.” (Moses 4:33,35)
I am convinced that when this life is passed and we are brought to stand before the Lord
And the realities of the eternities and all of Heavenly Father’s creations and all of the blessings that we would receive as heirs of the Celestial Kingdom are before us
The things for which we have sinned on this earth will seem so totally and completely foolish
We will no doubt ask ourselves how we could have jeopardized the grandeur of eternity for things so utterly worthless
The bottle of alcohol, the pornographic webpage, the breaking of the Sabbath day, the not paying of tithing, the dishonest business deal,
or even more serious sins I think will seem so completely undesirable
I pray that when that moment comes, none of us might wish we had had more time to repent of things that we didn’t”
It was during the last couple minutes of J.J.’s talk you could feel a very real sensation of our Heavenly Father’s plan for His children. Each person born on this Earth or ever born is a child of the same Heavenly Father. He loves each one of us and wants to give to each of us all that He has. This purpose of this world is so much bigger than we can imagine and its time in eternal life so important but yet such a pin drop in the spectrum of our existence. I knew it while he spoke, to believe in the truths I cannot see, to express that obedience by actions and repent to God when I stray from His plan. Would that you could have been there as well – that meeting was more than a talk, it was the soft, gentle heavenly confirmation that the world is as real as the realities that exist hereafter.
Final note: I asked J.J. if I may receive a copy of his talk and share this. He sent me the electronic version which is directly quoted above. Thank you J.J.