I want to connect with God today. I feel stressed and a bit overwhelmed with all the things I have on my plate.
Meeting at 9:00.
Presentation proposal at 10:00.
Additional meetings and calls after that.
It’s not too crazy, but I’m feeling the stress.
The other day I was studying about the war chapters, about Captain Moroni, and about the correlation with pornography addiction; I want to continue that study. Here are the questions I’d proposed:
- What is the price of contention?
- What is the power of righteous unity?
- What results can I find of keepings covenants and the blessings that can flow from being true in whatever circumstances I face?
- What are the blessings of gospel-centered homes? And how can I find this in these chapters?
- How can I better gain an increased appreciation for the Lord’s closeness to His chosen servants in times of difficulty and trial?
- Why did Mormon record so much about war?
I want to study more about this question:
Why did Mormon record so much about war in the Book of Mormon?
To me, this is pretty clear today: we are in a literal war with Satan and his servants. Satan is coming at us from all sides – he wants to destroy families and take away our agency.
He does this with pornography as one of his greatest tools.
In D&C 76:29 it says this:
Wherefore, he maketh war with the saints of God, and encompasseth them round about.
This reminds me of the chains and blindness I’ve felt as I’ve been in my addiction in the past. I have felt encompassed, trapped, blinded, unaware, lost, stolen, entrapped, and as a different person.
I also found a lesson plan from LDS institute that says the following:
Alma 43–63 is filled with accounts of war. These chapters can easily be likened to our daily battles with Satan.
They present this assignment that I feel is fitting to add:
In Alma 43:23-25, Moroni inquires of Alma what he should do, or where the armies of the Lamanites is going. Alma receives answers after inquiring of the Lord where the armies are going. He says, “…they might come over into the land of Manti, that they might commence an attack upon the weaker part of the people.”
Commence an attack upon the weaker part of the people.
Why were they weak?
What makes me weak?
Lack of connection with God makes me weak. Stress makes me weak. Lack of sleep makes me weak. Contention makes me weak. Lack of preparation makes me weak. Not feeling the spirit makes me weak. Feeling isolated and alone makes me weak.
So what did Moroni do?
And he caused that all the people in that quarter of the land should gather themselves together to battle against the Lamanites, to defend their lands and their country, their rights and their liberties; therefore they were prepared against the time of the coming of the Lamanites. (v 26)
He got them all together, he united them, and he got them involved in recovery and healing and helping one another. And they were prepared!
And Moroni placed spies round about, that he might know when the camp of the Lamanites should come. (vs 28)
Why spies? How does this apply to me?
I feel being part of the SA group and the ARP Support group is like that – we are all trying to be aware, to study, and to submit our will to God. We are trying to prepare ourselves and stay connected to God. As I get feedback and direction from others, they are helping me “know when the camp of [Satan] should come.”
I like this scripture too:
8 Yea, he had been strengthening the armies of the Nephites, and erecting small forts, or places of resort; throwing up banks of earth round about to enclose his armies, and also building walls of stone to encircle them about, round about their cities and the borders of their lands; yea, all round about the land.
9 And in their weakest fortifications he did place the greater number of men; and thus he did fortify and strengthen the land which was possessed by the Nephites.
How does this apply to me?
Strengthening my army: I can do this by connecting with God, by communicating with others in the group, and by sharing what’s working for me in recovery. I can do this by attending the meetings consistently and being actively involved.
Erecting small forts or places of resort: this is all about protection. I feel being part of the group is one way I can protect myself and my family. Talking about things openly is the opposite of isolation and addiction. My small forts or places of resort can be built as I study the scriptures, write in my journal, share with others, and earnestly strive to connect with God one day at a time.
Throwing up banks of earth round about to enclose his armies, Building walls of stone to encircle them: reading from the different materials and tools I’ve found, doing the AEIOU’s at night with Becky, talking with my sponsees regularly, writing in my journal, going to recovery meetings, going to other events that are about recovery, asking God for help on a moment to moment basis – these are ways I can continue to build tools and protection from the power of Satan.
In the weakest fortifications, he did place the greater number of men: It’s good to see lots of men at the meetings I’m going to. The more of us there are that are fighting this addiction, the more open and honest we can be with one another and with others to bring it to light and fight it.
He did fortify and strengthen the land: For me, I feel the true way I can do this is by surrendering my will to God’s, by asking Him what I can do on a day-to-day basis to submit my will to His and live in recovery. I feel writing in my journal and studying the words of God are such tools that fortify and strengthen me, being a sponsor also helps in this way.
10 And thus he was preparing to support their liberty, their lands, their wives, and their children, and their peace, and that they might live unto the Lord their God, and that they might maintain that which was called by their enemies the cause of Christians.
This fight against pornography is the same: supporting my liberty, my land, my wife, my children, and my peace; that I might live unto the Lord my God, and that I might maintain that which is called by my enemies the cause of Christians.
In Chapter 50 of Alma, it says this:
1 And now it came to pass that Moroni did not stop making preparations for war, or to defend his people against the Lamanites; for he caused that his armies should commence in the commencement of the twentieth year of the reign of the judges, that they should commence in digging up heaps of earth round about all the cities, throughout all the land which was possessed by the Nephites.
I can’t stop making preparations either. I have to always want to study, to learn, to prepare so that Satan will have no power over me and over my family.
I like Alma 59:9 too:
…and knowing that it was easier to keep the city from falling into the hands of the Lamanites than to retake it from them
It’s easier to stay out of trouble with Satan than it is to get out of trouble with him. I’ve felt this. If I’m willing to study and to pray and to be aware, that is so much easier and so much happier than trying to dig my way out of an endless pit of regret, remorse, anger, and unworthiness.
I’m grateful for the study I’ve done today. I’m grateful to be in recovery today. I’m grateful for the war chapters in the Book of Mormon and how much they relate to what I’m going through today in my life.
I look forward to continuing to study about these things throughout the week.