Showing posts with label Spirit world. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Spirit world. Show all posts

Monday, June 25, 2012

My Brother Beyond the Veil

Today is my brother’s birthday.

That normally wouldn’t be significant enough to post on a public blog for the entire world – after all, you’re probably only interested in my siblings’ birthdays if you know them. photo (1)But for him, it’s different.

This is my brother’s 30th birthday. That isn’t really what makes this different. What makes this birthday different is that two years ago on August 14, 2010, my brother passed away after a nine month battle with cancer. I guess the first year after someone dies every day is like their birthday. I don’t remember feeling any significantly poignant feelings on his birthday last year, but I do remember being an emotional wreck for a year after his death.

Today was hard. I woke up thinking about him. I did my yoga thinking about him. I posted on Facebook thinking about him. My sister called and we talked about him, then we talked about life. I made breakfast thinking about him. I ate breakfast thinking about him.

And I cried.

Then I texted my husband and told him we need to make a cake for my brother today. And then I decided I needed to write this post. For me. And for anyone else who feels like their opportunity to build a relationship with someone they love was cut short.

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At General Conference, Elder Richard G. Scott talked about revelation – but something slightly unrelated to revelation stuck with me from his talk. Elder Scott said,

“Relationships can be strengthened
through the veil
with people we know and love.”

I didn’t know my brother super well. He was 4 years older than me and left for college just after his junior year of high school (yup, he was that smart). I had always looked up to him, and I still do. I miss him a lot.

My first thought when we received the news that his cancer was terminal was that I wasn’t going to have the next 60-70 years to get to know him. I always imagined us siblings living til we were 100 and having family reunions and just enjoying each other. My siblings are all so very smart and it’s always a good time when we’re together.

The loss of my brother was a loss of hopes and dreams for our relationship.

So Elder Scott’s promise that our relationships can be strengthened through the veil made my ears perk up. I definitely hope that is true. I feel like it is true. I still pray for my brother, all the time, even though he is gone from this mortal life.

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Rather than write a bunch about my brother, I am just going to repost here a piece I wrote for my brother just before he passed away, a piece I never got the chance to read to him. I am going to take it to the temple with me next time I go – I always feel close to him in the temple – and read it to him in the celestial room. Do you think he would hear it?

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Ross passed away Saturday, August 14, 2010
in the presence of his wife, father, sister Christy, brother-in-law Adam,
and other friends and family.
His passing leaves a very large hole in my heart,
and I am aching with the desire
to say more, do more, and be more to and for him.

I am actually writing this on Friday, August 6, 2010.

Two weeks before it will post. (I was originally intending to post this the day I left for Seattle -which was going to be August 20.)

I’m not ready to face what is coming, and so... like anyone else, I’m denying it will happen, and pretending it won’t, until it’s too late.

Yesterday we talked with my oldest brother, Ross, on Skype.

He beat brain tumors, and swelling from a fall, and is getting stronger every day in rehab.

Meanwhile, the tumors in his chest are growing and growing.

The doctors have given him a timeline – weeks, maybe a few months. Probably more like weeks.

They gave him a choice to do some more chemo, but it won’t help, they say.

So, I’ve booked a flight to Seattle to see my brother. Probably for the last time.

I would like to tell you my story about my brother.

Ross from my perspective

Growing up, I loved my brother. I wanted to be just like him. I wanted his stuff. I wanted his friends. I wanted his talents (he is so talented!). In fact, when I started junior high – I wanted to even dress just like him. Big baggy pants and big baggy shirts (what was I thinking? I got a little smarter the next year, and realized that I could be like my brother without sacrificing fashion).

Ross played the violin. Really well. I wanted to play the violin just as well as him. So I practiced every day until my fingers were raw. I even tried to get into the BYU Music School. No one made me love music more than Ross (except maybe my mother – but he got it from her, too). Ross played the piano. Really well. I wanted to play the piano really well, too. I didn’t practice all the time. Piano and I have never really gotten along, as far as practicing-to-get-good goes. But I do enjoy playing. Then Ross learned how to play the guitar and got good. I wanted to play the guitar, too. So I practiced every now and then.

Ross is great with computers. He even taught me about RAM once when I was in high school, or maybe college. He showed me how to install new RAM in a computer. I developed a new level of admiration for my brother. He is so smart! My interest in computers at all is because of Ross. I wanted to learn some programming languages. I wanted to learn how to build my own websites. I wanted to learn how to fix computers and mess with them and stuff. I even wanted to learn how to use Linux (which I did, sort of, for a while... but then I got lazy... er, had kids).

Ross loves to read. He loves music. He loves to learn. He loves to play games (my love of European board games? From Ross). My love of reading? Ross. My intense desire to Google anything that I don’t understand? Ross. Probably the only things Ross didn’t inspire me to do is read my scriptures, pray regularly, run, and eat healthy.

That was Janie (his wife).

I hold him on this pedestal (and Janie goes right beside him on it). And I don’t think he knows that.

Really, all I want to be I want to be because of my brother. Because he is such a great example of hard work, honesty, learning, knowledge, having fun, and being a good person. I plan on telling him all these things (and more) when I get to see him in person. I hope it doesn’t sound too cliché – making amends with him as he’s dying.

I would have said these things before, but I never knew the right words to say, and I worried that he wouldn’t want to hear it. But now it doesn’t matter if he wants to hear it. There are no bridges to be burned. There won’t be another chance. If I want him to hear it, I need to tell him now.

That is my story about how much I love my brother.

Read more about my brother and my feelings about his death here.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

GCBC Week 11: “How to Obtain Revelation and Inspiration for Your Personal Life”

I mentioned before that I participated in TwitterStake this year for General Conference, and it was a really interesting and exciting experience. My first tweet of Elder Scott’s talk?

Elder Scott's first words? Appreciation for his wife.
He sure loves her! #ldsconf #TwitterStake #marriage

I am always struck by Elder Scott’s love for his wife. He has mentioned her in at least his last three or four General Conference talks. Last October conference I decided that I want to be just like Sister Scott.



I loved the distinction between revelation and inspiration that Elder Scott gives in his opening remarks.

The Holy Ghost communicates important information that we need to guide us in our mortal journey. When it is crisp and clear and essential, it warrants the title of revelation. When it is a series of promptings we often have to guide us step by step to a worthy objective, for the purpose of this message, it is inspiration.

From this I got:

revelation – crisp, clear, and essential
inspiration – a series of promptings leading us to a worty objective

There was a lot more that stood out to me in this talk, and I can’t wait to discuss it with you!

What stood out to you in this talk?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Look Up When You Can’t Sing

(find the talks here – It Is Better to Look Up - and here – The Songs They Could Not Sing)

Elder Quentin L. Cook pointed out that one of the questions General Authorities hear the most is “Why does Heavenly Father allow bad things to happen to good people?”

My husband and I have talked about this principle a lot. It is also spoken about in General Conference pretty frequently. There are three sources of suffering that we may experience in this mortal life.

1.) suffering caused by our own sins/disobedience to God’s commandments
2.) suffering caused by the sins of others/their disobedience to God’s commandments
3.) suffering caused by the mortality and imperfection of this world and our bodies – disease, natural disasters, etc

Elder Quentin L. Cook made a really good point when he said, “Adverse results in this mortal life are not evidence of lack of faith or of an imperfection in our Father in Heaven’s overall plan.” First of all – of course it is not evidence of an imperfection in Heavenly Father’s plan! His plan is perfect, and His plan and purpose for each of us is beautiful and perfect and will ultimately bless our lives in ways we never thought possible if we will have faith and turn to Him. I think that we are quick to judge both ourselves and others when we encounter adversity. It is easy to think that someone “brought upon themselves” their trials. But remember those three sources of suffering? Only one of them has anything to do with our own choices.

“The refiner’s fire is real, and qualities of character and righteousness that are forged in the furnace of affliction perfect and purify us and prepare us to meet God.” Lately I have been enduring some trials that have been caused by source #2. I have found myself staring at the floor, wondering what is wrong with me and why this his happening to me, and trying to figure out what I did to deserve this (that is, I was thinking that I was enduring these trials because of source #1). Elder Carl B. Cook asked, “Why is it a challenge to consistently look up in our lives? Perhaps we lack the faith that such a simple act can solve our problems.” I did not have the faith that looking up would solve my problems. My problems were being caused by the agency of another person. How could anything I could do change anything? I wasn’t the one making poor choices – I can’t make choices for other people. That was when I read Corine’s post on charity and I realized that even though the suffering was caused by another’s choices, I could choose how to deal with the trial.

Elder Carl B. Cook said, “As I thought of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ’s power, my heart found the comfort I had sought in vain from the floor of that descending elevator.” Notice that Elder Cook’s problems didn’t go away – but he did find comfort. He went on to say that if we “exercise our faith and look to God for help, we will not be overwhelmed with the burdens of life. We will not feel incapable of doing what we are called to do or need to do. We will be strengthened, and our lives will be filled with peace and joy.” I have really been experiencing a refiner’s fire lately, and as I have been turning to the Lord for strength, and practicing charity, I have been learning that these trials are the Lord’s way of perfecting me and purifying me. For what? Maybe nothing other than to live with Him again someday. But as I look to the Lord for strength in my trials, and as I learn to forgive and love, I am feeling myself grow and develop in ways I didn’t even know I needed to grow.

When Elder Quentin L. Cook spoke about songs that will not be sung, it reminded me of my older brother. My oldest brother passed away a little over a year ago. There were so many songs he didn’t get to sing – and yet, there were so many things he was able to do in his life. Elder Cook pointed out “A unique challenge for those who have lost loved ones is to avoid dwelling on the lost opportunities in this life.” For me, this lost opportunity would be the opportunity to encourage my brother to come back to the Church.

The prophet Joseph Smith said “The only difference between the old and young dying is, one lives longer in heaven and eternal light and glory than the other, and is freed a little sooner from this miserable, wicked world. Notwithstanding all this glory, we for a moment lose sight of it, and mourn the loss, but we do not mourn as those without hope.” The glorious part about loosing my brother is that he is not gone forever. He is in the Spirit world (which is all around us) and he can still learn and progress, and I feel like he may come back to the Church. I know at least that he is with our family – our grandparents and aunts and uncles, and they are looking after him and teaching him and testifying to him.

What did you learn about adversity and trial from these talks? Do you look up when you are feeling discouraged or when trials are in your way? Have you felt like you were in a refiner’s fire? Did you feel yourself growing? Did you see a more perfect version of yourself come out of the fire?

Find more insight on this talk over at
Diapers and Divinity’s General Conference Book Club

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Wheat and Tares

For in that day, before the Son of man shall come, he shall send forth his angels and messengers of heaven, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them out among the wicked; and there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. For the world shall be burned with fire. JST Matthew 13:42-44

What does it mean to be wicked or righteous? When the Savior taught the parable of the wheat and the tares and other parables about the kingdom of heaven, he said that at His coming, he would send angels and messengers to separate “all things that offend, and them which do iniquity” and “cast them out among the wicked.”

The Spirit World – levels of righteousness

In the Gospel Principles manual, we can read a little more about where those that “offend” and those “which do iniquity” will be sent. We know that during this life, those who have not accepted the gospel of Jesus Christ (whether or not they even had the opportunity) will be sent to Spirit Prison. “In the spirit prison are the spirits of those who have not yet received the gospel of Jesus Christ… also in the spirit prison are those who rejected the gospel after it was preached to them either on earth or in the spirit prison. These spirits suffer in a condition known as hell.” (p.244) In Alma we read, “ the spirits of the wicked, yea, who are evil – for behold they have no part nor portion of the Spirit of the Lord… these shall be cast out into outer darkness; there shall be weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth, and this because of their own iniquity.” So does this mean that everyone who has not received the gospel in this life is “wicked”? We could assume that, since they are in “spirit prison” with those who suffer because they will not accept the gospel. But there is more to spirit prison than just suffering. “The spirits in paradise can teach the spirits in prison” (p.243) and “if [the spirits in prison] accept the gospel and the ordinances performed for them in the temples, they may leave the spirit prison and dwell in paradise.” (p.244) So being in spirit prison doesn’t automatically pass a judgment of “wicked” on a person. The wicked go to spirit prison and suffer in condition known as hell, while those who were righteous go to spirit prison to wait for an opportunity to accept the gospel, and to wait for their temple work to be done.

The spirit world, then, is just like the mortal world we live in right now. There are levels of righteousness and spirituality, and there are levels of suffering. In this life, when we are righteous and live the gospel, we have peace – we also experience suffering, because that is the nature of this world; however, we can experience peace as well. Those who do not have the gospel, yet live righteously, are also living in a measure of peace and happiness. Just because they don’t have the gospel does not mean they need to be tormented. There are those who have an even greater measure of the spirit and peace, those who believe in Christ, but do not have the fullness of the gospel. I think that when we realize how the spirit world is set up – that there are righteous people even in spirit prison, we can understand that there are righteous people on this earth who do not have the fullness of the gospel. This understanding of wicked and righteous helps me to be less judgmental of those I associate with.

Many of us have heard Christians who say anyone who has not accepted Christ is going to “hell” – and that they will be burned and all that. Thankfully we have a more understanding view of how the spirit world works, and those who are righteous, even if they have not had an opportunity to accept the gospel, will not suffer in “hell”, although they will dwell in spirit prison. But sometimes I think we are misguided in our understanding of what is wicked and what is righteous, and there are members of the Church who will tell you that those not of our faith will be going to hell.

The Second Coming of the Savior Jesus Christ gives us another opportunity to study the “wicked”and the “righteous”. “When Jesus comes again… the wicked will be destroyed.” (p.257) Again, who will the wicked be at the time of the Savior’s coming? Probably more those who are in the second category of the spirits who will be in spirit prison – those who reject the gospel after it has been preached to them, whether in this life or in the next. The Gospel Principles book gives us a little more insight into who will be left during the Millennium (after the Second Coming – remember, at the second coming the wicked will be destroyed, and the righteous will live on the earth during the Millennium). Who will be “the righteous”? “They will be those who have lived virtuous and honest lives. These people will inherit either the terrestrial or celestial kingdom.” (p. 263)

Will only members of the Church be living during the Millennium? No – all people who have lived virtuous and honest lives will be on the earth during the Millennium. I know many people not of our faith who are virtuous and honest people. They will all live with Christ as well. “Eventually everyone will confess that Jesus Christ is the Savior.” But until then, it will be just like living with our kind Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, atheist, black, Asian, Republican, and Democrat neighbors as we do today.

Puts it into perspective now, doesn’t it? If we cannot live in happiness and in harmony with people who are different than us now, what makes you think you will be able to live that way in the Millennium? It makes me want to be more kind and charitable to people I don’t agree with, especially if they are kind and charitable people. I want to be able to live during the Millennium, but I know that I won’t be able to if I don’t learn how to get along with people right now, in this life.

I hope it is easier for you now to understand the difference between “wicked” and “righteous” – and that not all those in spirit prison are horrible people – some of those people may even be resurrected during the Second Coming with the other righteous during the First Resurrection. (see Gospel Principles p. 260)

A sister in our Relief Society made this very profound statement, “Each person will be taught the gospel in a way that they perfectly understand what they are accepting or rejecting.” When someone rejects the gospel, we have a tendency to judge them as “wicked” – but as this wise sister said, they will have the opportunity to understand perfectly what it is they are rejecting or accepting, and maybe they don’t understand it perfectly.

How do you understand wickedness and righteousness as it pertains to the Spirit World and to the Savior’s Second Coming? Can you look around you now in your life and see people who you think might actually live during the Millennium that before you maybe thought wouldn’t? Does having a better understanding of who the righteous are help you desire to get along and associate with people you may not have before because of their beliefs?

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Sabbath Part IV – Rest From Our Labors

(This is Part IV of a five part series on The Sabbath)

To Rest From our Labors

Elder Perry said, “Sometimes we think of resting from our labors as merely letting the hay baler stand idle in the field or putting a Closed sign on the business door.” President Kimball said, “Abstinence from work and recreation is important, but insufficient.”

Our “work” these days is often done in the home, from the home, and sometimes it is hard to stay away from those work related activities in our homes. There are also other types of “work” we must rest from. “business activities we may accomplish from home, athletic competitions, and other pursuits that take us away from Sabbath day worship and the opportunity to minister to others.” I think that Elder Perry’s description of “work” can help us make our own judgments about what we should and should not do on the Sabbath. Anything that “takes us away from Sabbath day worship and the opportunity to minister to others” is probably not an appropriate activity for the Sabbath.

President Kimball warned, “Strange as it may seem, some Latter-day Saints, faithful in all other respects, justify themselves in missing their church meetings on occasion for recreational purposes, feeling that the best fishing will be missed if one is not on the stream on opening day or that the vacation will not be long enough if one does not set off on Sunday or that one will miss a movie he wanted to see if he does not go on the Sabbath.” Anything that takes us away from Sabbath worship is not keeping the Sabbath day holy, for sure. Our place is in our meetings on the Sabbath day – particularly sacrament meeting, but also Sunday School and Relief Society and Priesthood meetings.

I know some people (I won’t name names…) who like to nap all Sunday afternoon, or sleep in Sunday morning if they have afternoon Church meetings, but President Kimball says, “The Sabbath calls for constructive thoughts and acts, and if one merely lounges about doing nothing on the Sabbath, he is breaking it.” What? It’s breaking the Sabbath to lounge around? I thought we were supposed to “rest from our labors”?

A few weeks ago we studied the Gospel Principles lesson on the Spirit World and one of the characteristics of the Spirit world is that “The spirit world is a place of waiting, working, learning, and, for the righteous, resting from care and sorrow.” It seems contradictory to talk about “working” and “resting” in the same sentence, but that is exactly what the Spirit world will be like – we will rest from care and sorrow (from worldly things) and yet we will be working to save souls. Do you see the parallel with the Sabbath? On the Sabbath we rest from worldly pursuits and instead focus all our efforts on spiritual pursuits.

Taking a nap to rejuvenate your body and mind is obviously very appropriate for the Sabbath, but if your nap is three hours long you are probably missing out on “the opportunity to minister to others” on the Sabbath. And if you are needing a nap or to sleep in because you were out partying all night long on Saturday, or because you stayed up late Saturday night playing videos games or watching movies, then that is not really a good reason for a nap. Our preparation for the Sabbath day begins on Saturday. Remember that Primary song? “Saturday is a special day it’s the day we get ready for Sunday.” My family used to sing that song on Saturday as we did chores around the house getting it ready for the Sabbath. We try to retire early on Saturday night so that we will be rested and refreshed for the Sabbath day.

How do you rest on the Sabbath day? Do you choose only activities that will allow you to attend your meetings and that will allow you to find opportunities to minister to others?

Part III            Part V

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Postmortal Spirit World

(find the lesson here)

(Author's Edit 6/25/2012: I haven't read this post since I wrote it nearly a year ago, and I think that I wrote it when I was in a bad place emotionally and spiritually concerning my brother. If you've read some recent things I have posted about my brother, you'll know that his passing was really hard on me. Due to the other circumstances going on in my life around the time of his passing, I didn't really get the chance to grieve properly. So I spent most of 2011 working through all the grief. I think that I wrote this post shortly before I started going to therapy to work through some of the grief that I had bottled away, among other things. Fortunately, I don't feel this way anymore. I have also had some really great experiences that I won't share specifically, that give me a lot of hope for my brother. I am grateful for my family beyond the veil who I am sure are helping him and loving him. What a beautiful thing this doctrine is of a spirit world and of eternal families.)

The Gospel Principles manual asks this question “What comfort do you receive from your knowledge that there is life after death?” Well, let me tell you how not comforting this knowledge has been for me recently.

My oldest brother passed away just over a year ago after a fierce battle against cancer. He and his wife (both baptized members of the Church) were not married in the temple and had no desire to be affiliated with the Church in any way. My brother served a mission, but he was married shortly after he got back. My heart always longed for them to accept the gospel again and come back to the Church, but that didn’t happen. And then my brother was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer, which he fought valiantly, but in the end, the cancer won.

When my brother passed away, my heart completely broke. I love my brother and I looked up to him my entire life. I wanted to be just like him. But the thing that broke my heart the most was not knowing what would happen to him in the next life.

When someone dies in the Church, our knee-jerk reaction is to remind the grieving family about the possibility for eternal families. The problem with those “comforting words” in our situation is that they are not entire comforting. To me it is a devastating reminder of my brother’s lack of faithfulness in the gospel. I have tried to reason it away, telling myself that Heavenly Father can be the only judge, and maybe he will be lenient with my brother. Regardless of what I tell myself, the doctrine is clear.

I was reading the Book of Mormon a few months ago and this passage from Alma 34 sat on my mind like a weight:

34 Ye cannot say, when ye are brought to that awful crisis, that I will repent, that I will return to my God. Nay, ye cannot say this; for that same spirit which doth possess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world.

35 For behold, if ye have procrastinated the day of your repentance even until death, behold, ye have become subjected to the spirit of the devil, and he doth seal you his; therefore, the Spirit of the Lord hath withdrawn from you, and hath no place in you, and the devil hath all power over you; and this is the final state of the wicked.

You can see how that scripture would not be comforting to someone like me, concerned about the spiritual welfare of my brother. I stewed over this for a few days, until I got to Alma 41 and read

3 And it is requisite with the justice of God that men should be judged according to their works; and if their works were good in this life, and the desires of their hearts were good, that they should also, at the last day, be restored unto that which is good.

If you know my brother, he was a very good person. He cared about people, he was kind, and he always sought out good things. He was not, by any standard, and “evil” person. He was a good person. And although he rejected the gospel in this life (and may reject it in the next) I have hope for him because “if their works were good… and the desires of their hearts were good… they should… be restored unto that which is good.”

When I asked my brother why he and his wife did not get married in the temple, he told me that they were not sure that the gospel was true, they didn’t believe in Christ, so they felt that it would be worse for them to get married in the temple – they felt like they would be lying. I can’t see that being anything but good. Their motives were pure, I felt.

Returning to the question about the comfort I get from a knowledge of life after death – I think that in the end, it is comforting. I know that I will be able to see my brother again. We may not be able to live together in the Celestial Kingdom, but I will be able to see him. I will be able to talk with him, walk with him, hug him. He is not lost to me.

I have always known that the Spirit world is all around us, but I seem to forget just how close it is. “Sometimes the veil between this life and the life beyond becomes very thin. Our loved ones who have passed on are not far from us.” (President Ezra Taft Benson). I believe this with all my heart, and I have experienced it. Most often in the temple, where the veil is very thin. It is comforting to know that we don’t go to some far off place when we die. We stay here, we get to be with the people we love (even if we can’t see them all the time). “President Brigham Young taught that the postmortal spirit world is on the earth, around us.”

As far as our spirits go, like Alma 34 mentioned, “Spirits carry with them from earth their attitudes of devotion or antagonism toward things of righteousness.” I would add that they may have an attitude of indifference toward things of righteousness. Although, my brother did have a devotion to many things of righteousness – he was just indifferent, I believe, toward the basic tenets of the gospel. He did love good things, and was a very kind person.

I wish that I could say I believe my brother will be in Spirit paradise – where there is “rest from all… troubles and from all care, and sorrow.” However, I am certain it is more likely that he will have to endure spirit prison (which is not necessarily a bad place – just a place of learning, and repenting, and suffering for ones sins). Since he did not accept the gospel in this life (or rejected it after he had received it) the scriptures teach that he will have to suffer for his own sins and then, “after suffering… [he] will be allowed, through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, to inherit the lowest degree of glory, which is the telestial kingdom.” But I think perhaps he will be happy there. And maybe he will get a second chance to receive the gospel in the Spirit world and be able to inherit a higher kingdom. I don’t know. Maybe some day I will know.

The lesson taught a few more interesting things about the Spirit world. The priesthood is organized the same way it is here. Also, families are still organized. This part got me upset again because President Jedediah M. Grant said “When I looked at families, there was a deficiency in some, … for I saw families that would not be permitted to come and dwell together, because they had not honored their calling here.” I know that I will see my brother again, I just don’t know if we will be permitted to dwell together. Sometimes I feel like part of that is my fault for not trying harder. But I know that it was his choice.

Spirit prison is also not a horrible place to be. “These spirits have agency and may be enticed by both good and evil. If they accept the gospel and the ordinances performed for them in the temples, they may leave spirit prison and dwell in paradise.”

It seems to me like the postmortal world is simply a continuation of this world. “Heaven” is not until after judgment. Spirit paradise and spirit prison are simply the next step. Until the judgment comes, we just continue the work we did here (and for the righteous, they will get to rest from care and sorrow – not necessarily from work).

I am grateful that I had the opportunity to study this lesson, because my mind has been filled with so much lately concerning my brother. While I am not completely comforted (I feel sorrow because of some of the things I know) I am grateful that I have a better knowledge of what will happen to him. And I do know that I will see him again – and that is a comforting thought.

What comfort do you receive from your knowledge about life after death? What things did you learn about the spirit world from reading this lesson in the manual? Do you feel the spirit world around you sometimes? Does the thought of continuing the work on the other side of the veil make you excited, or tired?

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