Can a fish be proud of water? Did he earn the water? Did he work hard and qualify for a certain amount of water?
God has blessed me with my two hands, can I be proud of my ten fingers? What did I do to earn ten fingers? Nothing, they are a gift from God.
Can I be proud of sunshine? What did I do to earn sunshine? Nothing, it is a gift from God.
Can I be proud of all the air I have to breath? What did I do to accumulate all this air? Nothing, it is a gift from God. But without these gifts I could do nothing. All the glory goes to God.
I am the branch, he is the trunk. (John 15) The branch can only produce when it is connected to the trunk. If I take glory to myself, I am pulling away from the trunk and then I can’t produce any fruit. The Glory goes to God. He does want me to use my two hands, to multiply my talents, but also to remember my own nothingness. The people who have come to understand their nothingness took part in amazing miracles. Somehow it gives one greater access to God’s power when we aren’t seeking to take strength unto ourselves. (Jacob 5:48)
Even Christ said he could do nothing of himself, he only did what the Father commanded him to do.
5 For behold, if the knowledge of the goodness of God at this time has awakened you to a sense of your nothingness, and your worthless and fallen state— (Mosiah 4)
11 And again I say unto you as I have said before, that as ye have come to the knowledge of the glory of God, or if ye have known of his goodness and have tasted of his love, and have received a remission of your sins, which causeth such exceedingly great joy in your souls, even so I would that ye should remember, and always retain in remembrance, the greatness of God, and your own nothingness, and his goodness and long-suffering towards you, unworthy creatures, and humble yourselves even in the depths of humility, calling on the name of the Lord daily, and standing steadfastly in the faith of that which is to come, which was spoken by the mouth of the angel.
12 And behold, I say unto you that if ye do this ye shall always rejoice, and be filled with the love of God, and always retain a remission of your sins; and ye shall grow in the knowledge of the glory of him that created you, or in the knowledge of that which is just and true (Mosiah 4)
12 Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever. (Alma 26)
10 And it came to pass that it was for the space of many hours before Moses did again receive his natural strength like unto man; and he said unto himself: Now, for this cause I know that man is nothing, which thing I never had supposed. ( Moses 1)
20 I say unto you, my brethren, that if you should render all the thanks and praise which your whole soul has power to possess, to that God who has created you, and has kept and preserved you, and has caused that ye should rejoice, and has granted that ye should live in peace one with another—
21 I say unto you that if ye should serve him who has created you from the beginning, and is preserving you from day to day, by lending you breath, that ye may live and move and do according to your own will, and even supporting you from one moment to another—I say, if ye should serve him with all your whole souls yet ye would be unprofitable servants.
22 And behold, all that he requires of you is to keep his commandments; and he has promised you that if ye would keep his commandments ye should prosper in the land; and he never doth vary from that which he hath said; therefore, if ye do keep his commandments he doth bless you and prosper you.
23 And now, in the first place, he hath created you, and granted unto you your lives, for which ye are indebted unto him.
24 And secondly, he doth require that ye should do as he hath commanded you; for which if ye do, he doth immediately bless you; and therefore he hath paid you. And ye are still indebted unto him, and are, and will be, forever and ever; therefore, of what have ye to boast?
25 And now I ask, can ye say aught of yourselves? I answer you, Nay. Ye cannot say that ye are even as much as the dust of the earth; yet ye were created of the dust of the earth; but behold, it belongeth to him who created you. (Mosiah 2)
This is not telestial doctrine. It is contrary to Korihors teaching, “every man conquers according to his strength.” (Alma 30)
I need to be willing to receive the gifts of God without SEEKING ANY OF THE CREDIT. A part of me has wanted to tell people what I DID to become successful. In the end, I need to acknowledge every good thing in my life is a gift from God. Moroni says to deny not the gifts of God (Moroni 10:8). I have been denying the gifts of God by wanting to tell people the story of my success. Can a fish take credit for the water it is swimming in?
There has been a part of me that has wanted something significant in my life that showed I am really special. I just need one last thing to show that I am more special, more spiritual, more gifted, more righteous, than others. I think I have wanted this because of my feeling inadequate and inferior. So, to prove I’m not inferior, I need something I can point to that shows I’m a cut above the rest. God please forgive me. God’s truth is that I am loved. The truth is that man is nothing, and yet because of the mercy of the atonement, because of God’s loving kindness, man has infinite worth and potential. I must seek to build the kingdom of God. As Moroni told Joseph Smith,
“Satan would tempt me… to get the plates for the purpose of getting rich. This he forbade me, saying that I must have no other object in view in getting the plates but to glorify God, and must not be influenced by any other motive than that of building his kingdom; otherwise I could not get them.” JSH 1:46
So it is with all the gifts of God. I must be motivated by love of God and desire to build his kingdom.
What did God create me to be? If God had not organized my spirit from intelligence, I would be undifferentiated intelligence, having potential, but no agency. God gave me the gift of agency, and the gift of mercy through the atonement, so that I could become like Him. He wants me to learn and grow through experience, gain wisdom, and become like him. In order to do this, I need to trust him, and not seek to build myself up with artificial evidence. God is a loving being, I must let go of all connections to darkness, and be full of love. Any time I seek to prove myself better than others in any way, that is an act of selfishness, I am seeking to become a law to myself. In that moment I am fearing that God’s love isn’t enough, and I need something else to validate me – a trophy of some kind. At that moment I am connecting to darkness, anti-power. I am drawing myself inward, and my heart is at war with those around me. I am threatened by their success, I miss out on the joy of loving others. I need to be full of love for God and all mankind. I am loved, I was created by loving Heavenly Parents who want me to experience a fullness of joy. I don’t need to jump through certain hoops to be loved. I don’t have to make a certain amount of money, I don’t have to have a certain type of car, or house, position, or any earthly trophy. I am loved. I am free to love others without restraint. Here is where I can throw my heart over the bar, in loving God and all mankind! Then am I being Christlike and experiencing a greater fullness of joy. I already have everything I need, I am free to love, to let love flow from God, to me, through me, and out to the earth and all mankind. Fear not, let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth give I unto you. (John 14:26? or John 13) I will seek first the Kingdom of God, and trust that God will bless me with all that I stand in need of.