The battle between good and evil has been a part of stories for the longest time. Even the oldest story ever told revolves around the conflict between light and darkness. The war in heaven was waged between principles of freedom and bondage, between agency and coercion, between charity and greed.
The clash between the desires of Jesus Christ and Lucifer when it comes to the welfare of humanity has never been more apparent than in today’s world. The pressure is felt most strongly within the family. As hard as we work to keep our family safe from the adversary’s attacks, it feels like Satan works twice as hard. He wants to win individual souls by plucking them from the protection of family relationships. He does this because he knows he can never win. The next best thing he can do is share his misery and woe with unfortunate souls that fall into his traps. The battleline has been drawn. How then do we stay on the winning side and have our family with us?
Willing Obedience to God
Trusting The One who understands everything from beginning to end, is the safest thing to do. It is comforting to know that He seeks the eternal joy of us all. The commandments that the Savior gives to us are, in actuality, instructions for safety and happiness. If we offer our will and submit it to our all-knowing and all-powerful Heavenly Father, He will be able to guide us every step of the way. By doing so, we need not risk going on unsafe roads. All we have to do is follow the path the Savior has marked for us. If husband and wife, parents and children, put complete trust in the plan that a loving Father in Heaven has designed for His children, we will all be able to stay within the bounds of safety.
Integrity in All That We Do
Another way to avoid being collateral damage in the adversary’s war, is to instill in our being the value of integrity. Integrity goes beyond its popular definition. It is popularly known as being honest in all that we do. But integrity is more than that. It delves into the “why” in all that we do. Motives make or break every act. No matter how good the act, if it is carried out because of selfish or evil desires, it is still not counted as righteousness. Our relationship as a family is strongly dependent upon what is inside our hearts. Parents often tell children, “We only want what is best for you.” But do we really base our opinions and advice upon what is best for our children? Or do we do so for personal gratification? It is in times like these that we need to check our motives, examine our inner desires and ask ourselves the “why” of everything that we do. Confidence will wax strong in each family member and each will learn to have faith in humanity, as well as caution where appropriate.
Protection From Within
We can build high walls or install state-of-the-art security systems for our homes to prevent outside physical dangers from intruding. We can even make our homes fire-proof, earthquake-safe or get all the insurance money can buy to prepare for a natural disaster. These preparations are good but they are not enough. If we want to protect our families from the dangers of the world, we start doing so from within. There are threats more dangerous than robbers or calamities. These threats are often subtle and sometimes seem harmless at first, but the effects can be devastating. Pornography, deceit, addiction, abuse and other menacing perils are accessible through the internet and through any other media that we expose ourselves to. If we want to protect our family from these dangers, we need to learn and teach correct principles (https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/church/news/viewpoint-learn-and-live-correct-principles?lang=eng). By doing so, we equip ourselves and our children with the moral courage needed to combat such threats when they are confronted with them. Even if nobody is watching, we will be able to make correct choices and avoid pain and regret. We need to reinforce this kind of protection because we cannot be with our family all the time.
Yes, we can help and pray for our family members when they are facing difficult situations but if we fortify our families early on, we can save ourselves from a lot of tears and heartache later on. And if trying times come, and they surely will, we will know what to do and who to trust. We are on the frontline of the battle between good and evil as we fight to protect what is sacred and of great worth. We have the help of heaven as we do our best to partner with Heavenly Father to bring to pass His work and His glory.