I was re-reading Mosiah 18 where Alma (Sr) is teaching the people at the waters of Mormon. Verse 4 reads:
4 And it came to pass that as many as did believe him did go forth to a place which was called Mormon, having received its name from the king, being in the borders of the land having been infested, by times or at seasons, by wild beasts.
Wait, what king? Where’s this King Mormon? Did his story get lost with the 116 pages? Was the Mormon that we know named after him? Wow, I can’t wait to someday find out what we missed. I can’t believe how intriguing this book is. I’d lament more about what we don’t know, but there’s still so much to discover in what we can read and know and learn. I hope someday the Lord will show me the visions of eternity as he did Nephi.
I wonder if I’ll ever be up to the challenge? Nephi seems to have been deeply depressed, on multiple occasions, because of what he “saw and heard” in his visions. Will I ever be strong enough to shoulder that burden, so that the Lord would trust me with that knowledge?
In the past, I’ve always seen the pursuit of knowledge as an exciting and joyful quest. I realize now with time and age, that sometimes the process of questioning can be difficult and very taxing on us emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Imagine seeing in a more personal and powerful way than any movie (3D or otherwise), the wickedness of people, their downfall, the murder and rape, the horrible devastation. This is a heavy burden to bear. Nephi struggled deeply with it. I wonder if sometimes Joseph Smith was less burdened by it because of the burden of his life, especially once he started practicing polygamy?
I know the hope and the mercy and love of our Heavenly Father and Jesus would counter-balance all that. I think it’s an interesting perspective, though. One that I hadn’t previously contemplated in any depth. I hope that it’s not a deterrent to anyone in their pursuit of further light and knowledge. It shouldn’t be. But it is important to remember that this isn’t just flowers and rainbows we’re pursuing. If we feel impatient because we’re not receiving the insight, knowledge, or promised blessings we think we should, remember that the Lord knows when we’re ready to receive it. It’s not all easy. A great burden comes with it. There’s a certain mental and spiritual strength we’ll need to endure it’s effect upon us afterward. There’s also a higher standard that we’ll be expected to live up to. The Lord knows when we’re ready and can withstand the test and responsibility that comes with such knowledge.