Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Sunset in Petaluma
Red. Yellow. Orange. Fiery.
The sunset on one Petaluma evening a few weeks ago appeared to be an incinerating furnace of beauty. It got me thinking: how is the sunset like our lives? How is the sunset like the Gospel? The sunset is that fleeting moment before the darkness, that last gasp before the termination of day. One cannot, try as he might, run in the sun's direction and prevent it from disappearing into the horizon. Today on exchanges with Elder Braegger, we read from Elder Christofferson's Ensign talk, "Reflections on a Consecrated Life." In it he entertains a particularly enlightening thought: "Those who believe that our bodies are nothing more than the result of evolutionary chance will feel no accountability to God or anyone else for what they do with or to their body. We who have a witness of the broader reality of premortal, mortal, and postmortal eternity, however, must acknowledge that we have a duty to God with respect to this crowning achievement of His physical creation." At the end of our day, when the light has been put to rest, an accountability must be given of what was done with the time and talents given us. "And now, as I said unto you before, as ye have had so many awitnesses, therefore, I beseech of you that ye do not bprocrastinate the day of your crepentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity, behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the dnight of edarkness wherein there can be no labor performed" (Alma 34:33).
Oftentimes when going about our daily lives, little or sporadic attention is placed on the sun's placement in the sky. Perhaps it is only at sunrise and sunset when most of our attention is directed towards this giant sphere of gas. Likewise, much joy comes into our lives with the birth of a baby commencing its time on earth. As we near the end of each day and the end our the end of our lives, we either reflect back with joy on what was accomplished or with regret on what was not done. The Lord admonishes us to not procrastinate our repentance but to assume accountability and press forward with steadfastness in Christ, being perfected in Him. We must not allow ourselves to fall into the snares of Satan, who would have us believe that he is "no devil, for there is none—and thus he whispereth in [our] ears, until he grasps [us] with his awful cchains, from whence there is no deliverance." I testify that if we ourselves live a consecrated life, we will at the last day see that sunset with joy, admiring the beauty and wonder of it.