BYU (Brigham Young University) is operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, often mistakenly called the “Mormon Church.” As part of their undergraduate coursework, BYU students take multiple semesters of spiritually uplifting, stimulating religion classes.
In this series (see below), students enrolled in scripture study classes have shared their thoughts, insights, and reflections on the Book of Mormon in the form of letters to someone they know. We invite you to take a look at their epiphanies and discoveries as they delve into the scriptures.
In publishing these, we fulfill their desire to speak to all of us of the relevance, power and beauty of the Book of Mormon, a second witness of Jesus Christ and complement to the Bible. The Book of Mormon includes the religious history of a group of Israelites who settled in ancient America. (The names they use are those of prophets who taught the Book of Mormon peoples to look forward to the coming of Christ—Nephi, Lehi, Alma, Helaman, and other unfamiliar names. We hope those names will become more familiar to you as you read their inspiring words and feel the relevance and divinity of their messages through these letters.)
Let us know if you’d like to receive your own digital copy of the Book of Mormon, and/or if these messages encourage and assist you spiritually as well.
Member Beliefs: A Happy Way To Get Through a Sad Time
I just wanted to tell you something I learned in my Book of Mormon class this last week. We were studying Alma 57-Helaman 4. There are so many great things in these chapters, but something stood out to me that I would like to share with you.
In chapter 58, Helaman is writing to Moroni about everything that has happened to him and his little band of two thousand stripling warriors. At the beginning of chapter 59, Moroni gets Helaman’s letter and is so happy for Helaman and his sons that he sends copies around to his whole army. My teacher made the point that, usually in real life it’s hard to celebrate with those who are celebrating when things aren’t going the way we would like them to in our own lives. Usually if someone’s gotten something that they’ve been wanting or gets to be the center of attention, we’re more likely to try and find things about the person that we don’t like, be jealous of them, and then celebrate with them. Then my wonderful teacher showed us something that I really love.
Better: celebrate with those that are celebrating
Bitter: focus on ourselves
Trials can either make us better people or they can make us bitter. One brings us closer to Christ and the other drags us further away. And the only difference in the way we react to a trial is one letter: I. There is an “I” in bitter and not in better. So when a trial comes, the only way to get through it and come out a better person for going through it, is if we focus on others rather than ourselves. This really changed my perspective as I’m recovering from my four concussions. And now that I’m able to do a bit more, I’m starting to think of ways I can do little things to serve the people around me. I hope as you go through difficult things in your life that you will keep this concept in mind and come out a better person then you were before. By the way, I already think you are an amazing person and I really look up to you and I hope that this will help you. It’s something that I’ve been trying to focus on the last week and I feel like it’s already made a difference in my attitude towards things that happen to me and towards other people. Something that I think I’ve had to learn over and over again is that you never know what kind of a day someone’s having and how much a smile or a “hi” from you can help them. And you’ll never be able to help those people who need a smile from you if you’re focused only on yourself.
Love you lots and can’t wait to see you again!