by H. Linn Murphy
Please pretend it's the 11th. I've been wretchedly busy and sick this month.
I was reading in Alma today and the thought occurred to me about how intricate God's designs are. The Book of Mormon couldn't have come to the Earth in this time. Look how easy it is to fake things—movie magic and sleight-of-hand and doctoring documents and a thousand other things someone could say might have been the origin of Joseph Smith's visions and the Book of Mormon. Instead, Moroni came at a time when the whole countryside was up in arms about religion. It was a nutrient-rich environment.
So many puzzle pieces had to fall perfectly into place. Guttenberg had to build his press. Martin Luther had to step up and risk the flames to bring light to the darkness. Joan of Arc had to stand for what she believed. George Washington and his patriots had to risk penury and death to build a free country. And thousands of people in between who stepped up or held back. I wonder how many people it took before Martin Luther said he'd go against the juggernaut that was the Catholic Church.
If Moroni had come to a 14-year-old boy in the dark ages, that boy would have been burned at the stake. If that boy had been an extremely well-educated man with libraries full of books and university credits behind his name, how much more difficult would it be to believe that he hadn't fabricated the evidence of the Book of Mormon?
Moroni had to come to someone who would stick his head up, risk censure and attacks on every side, and stand like the Rock of Gibralter in the face of the battering tides. He had to be indomitable and just malleable enough to accept God's guidance and the persecution that went with it. And persecution had to be part of the mix, or we'd wonder if Joseph had built the church to augment his need for power and attention. That terrible treatment instead honed the man into a fiery sword as the dross fell away.
I wonder what God is honing me to do. Will I be the weapon He needs to use at the correct times and in the correct places, or will I turn brittle and break? Am I one of his necessary puzzle pieces?