140 "What of Me?"
Trigger and Context:
This is one of many poems, and the fourth in a row that deals with the needs and travails of our Sisters. As part of the "New Direction" I have felt a "holier, more focused" concern for the welfare of our Sisters who are most vulnerable: the widows, the elderly, the single, the divorced, the ailing, and the needy--whether or not my companion and I have formal assignments for their care. They are almost invariably constant and faithful in their devotions, their service, and their love for others. However, both day and night I seem to hear their unspoken worries. Let me emphasize: I believe we have just entered that more intense period of chaos and contention to which numerous earlier pieces (going back 20 years); viz: 53, 62, 91, 93, 94, 96, 100, 102, 112, and 113 merely alluded. Our nation is "devolving" (rolling downward; losing ground; falling apart) faster and faster. The only true safety lies "on the good ship Zion".
Pondering the merits of my Sisters, my betters, I again felt compelled to address their circumstances in poetic form. I am anxious that this piece not be misinterpreted as an expression of either fear or selfishness on their part. Rather, it is intended to (a) reassure my beloved sisters and (b) direct my fellow brethren to actively seek out ways to aid them without compulsion or command. Brethren, when we "step up" without being "compelled in all things", we are made mighty in the Lord; we receive new spiritual gifts; and we become worthy to serve as Kings and Priests of the Most High in the world to come.
140. "What of Me?"
[I Explain my concern for the beloved daughters of the Lord.]
As I cast my gaze around me,
I confess the truth astounds me,
As our nation's crumbling faster
Than our mortal eyes can see.
What our Founders fought and died for,
And their progeny still cry for,
Quickly hastens toward destruction
As we lose our liberties.
Of all times and of all spaces,
This most excellent of places,
Prophesied as choice above all
Other lands on Earth we know.
Now is threatened with disaster,
As the “progress” most seek after,
Violates the Laws and Powers
Of the God they used to know.
And I seem to hear a crying,
As if cherished dreams were dying,
As the Daughters of Jehovah
Send His Father unspoken pleas.
These are widows, single sisters,
And the ones betrayed by “Misters”
Who've rejected those most sacred vows
Once made on bended knees.
[ I give some examples of frequently expressed worries.]
1. My car sounds like it is dying,
And, if asked, I would be lying,
If I said I wasn’t trying,
Just to make it day to day.
2. It’s as if my pension’s shrinking,
Rising costs have got me thinking,
And my budget keeps on sinking,
From the things I need each day.
3. Despite children’s best intentions,
The are living on pretensions,
And I fear that interventions
May be needed before long.
4. My love left me all alone now,
But its not my time to go now,
I must find some way to learn how,
I can find some calm and ease.
[I summarize these themes.]
Will I have enough to live on?
Can I last until the end?
As I seek for holy places
Will I find some valiant friends?
As the foes of God and Heaven
Now assault my agency
In my pain I ask of Father,
“What of me?”
[I praise their faith, while admitting their concerns.]
They don’t seek for “signs and wonders”,
They have faith “their time will come”.
But the pressures of the moment
Keep them always on the run.
While they struggle for a future
With their Lord they can’t yet see
They ask Father for Christ's grace now--
“What of me?”
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It is important that our petitions, and appreciation, to Heaven acknowledge the respective place of each member of the Godhead: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. Scriptures may use the same terms e.g. "Lord" or "God" in different ways--context usually clarifies the meaning, but modern day revelation is sometimes required. The "Lord God" Jesus Christ commanded, "Ye must always pray to the Father in my name" (3 Nephi 18:19-21). Thus, we direct our prayers to God the Father, and we ask God the Father for the grace He gives through His Only Begotten Son, the "Lord God", Jesus Christ:
"Grace is the help or strength given through the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ. Through the grace of God, everyone who has lived will be resurrected—our spirits will be reunited with our bodies, never again to be separated. Through His grace, the Lord also enables those who live His gospel to repent and be forgiven.
Grace is a gift from Heavenly Father given through His Son, Jesus Christ. The word grace, as used in the scriptures, refers primarily to enabling power and spiritual healing offered through the mercy and love of Jesus Christ." (ChurchofJesusChrist.org, Gospel Topics, "Grace".)
"Ye have said, It is vain to serve God: and what profit is it that we have kept his ordinance, and that we have walked mournfully before the LORD of hosts?
And now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered.
Then they that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the LORD, and that thought upon his name.
And they shall be mine, saith the LORD of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him.
Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not.”
Doctrine and Covenants 81:5-6
"Wherefore, be faithful; stand in the office which I have appointed unto you; succor the weak, lift up the hands which hang down, and strengthen the feeble knees.
And if thou art faithful unto the end thou shalt have a crown of immortality, and eternal life in the mansions which I have prepared in the house of my Father."
As the Doctrine and Covenants verse immediately above instructs us, Priesthood brethren are not invited but commanded to provide for righteous, needy Sisters. They are the Daughters of God. We remain "sons of men" unless and until we fulfill our duties. Only if we are "faithful unto the end" may we earn the crowns which, I submit, already await Our Sisters--"These Sisters", our betters. The emphasis of this collection is that God the Father, God the Son and God the Spirit are fully aware of each of us (brothers and sisters) and constantly seek our care, well-being, and eternal progress.
If this piece provokes discouragement, please consider the numerous other poems which affirm blessings, salvation, and exaltation coming to the faithful women of the Church both in this life and the world to come; viz: 12; 23; 24; 27-29; 32; 33; 37; 70; 92; 111; 116; 122; 124; 133; 137; 138; and 139. As you await solutions to your individual challenges, my dear Sisters, be assured that: (1) your trials are known; (2) you are worthy of love, (3) you are loved; and (4) God is directing His forces on both sides of the veil to come to your aid.