The case for writing

Why should we write?

Writing is a way of formalizing our thinking. Writing is an art of creation. When you write, you are making something, and creation is what we are designed to do.

Jesus gave a chilling rebuke to the Nephites, when after reviewing their records, “Jesus said unto them: How be it that ye have not written this thing?” (3 Nephi 23:11)

When God gives something to us, how can we show that we value it?

We can remember

We can write

We can act

Writing is a form of action, which also helps us remember. The beauty of writing on a blog is that what God has taught someone can be used to teach someone else.

The only things we know about Christ are the things that were written.

Where are you writing the lessons that God is teaching you?

What’s more important, the question or the answer?

What’s more important, the question or the answer?

Questions are the beginning of a journey. They are portals leading you to the adventure of seeking an answer. Once you get the answer, the quest is over, unless you’ve been able to uncover more questions along the way. If you feel like you have all the answers, you are deprived of the action of looking for them. It’s like downhill skiing. What part of skiing is the most fun? The journey, or arriving at the bottom?

Yes, answers are important, but even more so are the questions. What do the scriptures tell us about asking questions?

“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.” (James 1:5). Who doesn’t lack wisdom? Shouldn’t we all be constantly looking for questions that we can ask God, so that he can give wisdom to us liberally?

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you” (Matthew 7:7)

“Wherefore, now after I have spoken these words, if ye cannot understand them it will be because ye ask not, neither do ye knock; wherefore, ye are not brought into the light, but must perish in the dark.” (2 Nephi 32:4)

“If ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost. And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.” (Moroni 10:4-5)

How many revelations were received by someone who had all the answers? Why would God waste his time giving revelations to people who aren’t looking for then.

When studying the scriptures, or anything, it’s imperative to continue to look for the questions. Questions expand and focus the mind.

This blog post originated from a question. I recently spoke to my dad about scripture reading. I said something along the lines of “How do I get engaged in scripture reading again? When I open the scriptures, I can’t help but feel bored. This is completely new to me. I’ve always had such a strong witness of the importance of daily scripture reading, but I’m just not feeling it right now. What suggestions do you have?”

I don’t remember everything that we discussed, but here are a few things that I learned. It all started with having the humility to ask a very honest question that I had been afraid to vocalize.

  1. Reading chronologically at a normal pace isn’t going to cut it for me anymore. While I haven’t memorized the scriptures, I’ve certainly read them many times, and it’s just too hard for me to get anything significant by re-reading the stories.
  2. I need to ask questions while I read
  3. I can’t read the scriptures on my kindle, standing on the train, after an intense day at work, and expect too much from the exercise. I have to put a little more into my reading than that.
  4. I need to write something to help engage my brain.

As a matter of fact, that last point is why I’m writing this post. I had thought that I’d be writing a very eloquent post once a week, but that’s just too much of a barrier for me. I’m going to try starting my daily blog again, but this time focus on my spiritual learning exclusively. Daily blogging is just easier than any other frequency. Sure, the messages will not be as meaty as they could be, but it’s the surest way to keep me accountable, and keep the momentum going. It’s how I plan to get more out of my personal scripture study.

What do you do to get the most out of your scripture reading? What questions are you seeking answers to? If you have any suggestions or questions, I’d love it if you could post  it in the comments.

Why blog every day?

Because Seth Godin told me to on a podcast with Tim Ferriss.

And because I have a desire to create something. To start. To produce something that people can read, ponder, implement, or debate. To process the thoughts that swirl around in my brain in an unorganized fashion. To organize. To create. To become a better writer.

And because it’s easier to do something everyday, than to do something periodically.

And because perfect is the enemy of good enough, amazing, and wonderful.

So I start today.