I don’t know if you noticed, but I changed the title of the post a bit. Normally It’s a list of something or other. But while I wanted to include God and my belief in Him on my last list of lists, I didn’t want to trivialize Him in any way by simply listing off favorites attributes or parts of or whatever like other lists. So this is a list for God–because especially in today’s world I don’t think He gets enough recognition. He does so much for us–he acts so well towards us–and these are my favorite things He’s done or qualities He has that I see at this point in my life.
Grace. There’s an ongoing discussion between different Christian faiths as to what really gets you into heaven: works, or grace? Different denominations fall in different areas on the scale, but one thing I know for sure is that it is one of the most important aspects of God and my belief in Him. There are two scriptures from the book of Mormon that explain our beliefs about God’s grace. The first is in 2 Nephi 25:23, reading (in part): “for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.” This seems to weigh a bit works heavy, with that phrase ‘after all we can do’ hanging on the end. But another verse in Alma 24:11 states “And now behold, my brethren, since it has been all that we could do (as we were the most lost of all mankind) to repent of all our sins and the many murders which we have committed…”. This explains the doctrine of grace. We are only saved by grace–no man can earn his way into heaven. But God will not force the gift of his Grace and atonement upon us, and so the only thing we can do is accept it. And the way to accept it is repentance. Other good works come from being converted to the gospel, not as tic marks towards salvation.
Eternal Families. I am a part of God’s eternal family as a spirit daughter of his. A precious daughter whose name He knows personally, as He knows each of ours. Christ is my older brother whom I aspire to be like–a likeness of God. And the best part? I get to have my own family for eternity. Through the temple, I can be not only with my mom and dad and siblings for eternity–I can create my own family and have my spouse and children tied to me forever. Brilliant.
The Brilliant Plan of Happiness. Ok, I added the word brilliant to the real term. But it is brilliant! It’s bright and beautiful and shiny and… wonderful. God wants us to be happy–he wants us to feel happy and joyful. Another scripture in 2 Nephi 2:25 reads: Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy. God knows the most joy comes from living the way He has outlined for us, but even when it runs contrary to His will He will not override our agency. He just wants us to be happy.
Mercy. Oh, how merciful is our God. When you really think about it, humanity can be a really punk child at times. And yet God has been unwavering patient with us. Even more amazing, He has promised to forget our iniquities if we will repent and return to him. It says in Hebrews 8:12 that “For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.” And in the words of Elder Holland:
“however late you think you are, however many chances you think you have missed, however many mistakes you feel you have made or talents you think you don’t have, or however far from home and family and God you feel you have traveled, I testify that you have not traveled beyond the reach of divine love. It is not possible for you to sink lower than the infinite light of Christ’s Atonement shines.”
That is incredible mercy, if you ask me.
Justice. The justice of God is also something to glory in, even if it is most often associated with the harsh punishments of the Old Testament. As I’ve recently been learning, life is much better when laws and justice exist. If there was no justice, there would be no security in our state. We wouldn’t know if we would bear punishment for small and silly things, or get away with large and glaring acts. God’s just nature does not change, and we will always know where we stand with Him. His standards will never change.
Love. Lastly, I just want to mention how much God loves us. Have you ever really put yourself in His shoes, sending your beloved Child to suffer excruciating pain–exquisite in its terrible nature and endless duration–so that you might provide a way for the rest of your children to return to you? So much love. And God in Christ’s sense also has an immeasurable amount of love for us. Not only did he suffer for us, he also continues to comfort us when we need His strength. He suffered our pains, afflictions, sorrows, bore our sins and learned how to comfort us. His love is everlasting, and “We love him, because he first loved us.” John 4:19. Oh, how I love God. Thanks for reading, let me know why you love your Lord!
Thanks for reading,