What would you feel if you reached your ultimate goal and then you realize that some of the most important people in your life are missing? Will your joy still be complete? Will you look back and wonder where they are? My mind visits the vision in Lehi’s dream recorded in the 8th chapter of the Book of Mormon. A particular group of people stood out to me: the ones holding the iron rod. What could have they done while they were in there?
One of the most significant dreams in the Book of Mormon was that of Lehi’s and his vision about the Tree of Life. In his dream, he saw himself partaking of the fruit from a tree. After tasting of the said fruit, he felt great joy and he was eager for his family to taste it. The way towards the fruit was covered in the mist of darkness. For people to reach the tree, they needed to hold on to a rod of iron. However, some have lost their way in the darkness.
The Personal Lesson Of Lehi’s Dream
As I read the account of Lehi’s dream, I began to wonder what happened to those who got lost in the mist of darkness. I am sure that they feel afraid, unsure, and clueless where to go next. Without a familiar voice guiding them back to the rod of iron, they could wander endlessly. I also think about the families of those who were lost in the darkness. Yes, they could be persevering towards the Tree, but part of their heart longs for the return of their family members and their friends. I imagine that those who are lost await for a familiar voice to help show them the way. And those family members holding to the iron rod eagerly calling for the return of their loved one.
In our life, we have friends and family members who, like those in the mist of darkness, have lost their way. Some of them may be eager to return but because they have become so lost, they don’t know how to come back again. Some just wait for a someone to call out to them again. How comforting it would be that after being in the mist of darkness for so long, you hear a familiar voice calling out for your name. Once again, you can have that familiar voice to help you find your way back to the rod and to the Tree of Life.
Invitation To Those Holding The Iron Rod
For those who are now holding to the iron rod, don’t forget to call out for those who are in the mist of darkness. Let them hear your voice once again. Let them know that someone cares. Your eagerness to come to their rescue can spark a ray of hope. Help them find their way back. You can do this even by doing simple things like becoming their friend, inviting them to Church, or just be there to listen. Embark in Visiting and Home Teaching, befriend those who have returned. These simple gestures can make a difference.
In President Thomas S. Monson’s talk “Our Responsibility to Rescue,” he shared a letter from one who has left the Church.
“I had so much and now have so little. I am unhappy and feel as though I am failing in everything. The gospel has never left my heart, even though it has left my life. I ask for your prayers.
“Please don’t forget those of us who are out here—the lost Latter-day Saints. I know where the Church is, but sometimes I think I need someone else to show me the way, encourage me, take away my fear, and bear testimony to me.”
While we persevere in life, let us think about those who have lost their way. Let us take our time to search for them, know them, and reach out to them. May our voice be their guide back to happiness and light. It is my prayer that when we reach the Tree of Life, we can see that we have helped our loved backs to the rod of iron. Indeed, when that happens, we can truly say that our joy is full.