In Book of Mormon class this week, we began discussing 1 Nephi 8, which contains an account of Lehi’s vision of the tree of life. Something that really struck me was something said my a fellow classmate. When discussing the filthy waters of the river, temptation, sin, and powers of the devil, a very insightful young woman recalled a teaching from one of her leaders. She said that if faith is the first principle of the gospel, then fear is the first weapon of the adversary. This really struck me when she said it, and reminded me of a scripture that I learned as part of the BYU Foundations of Leadership Conference. The theme was “Courage to Lead” and the scripture the conference was built around was 2 Timothy 1:7
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
As a freshman here at BYU, fear is an easy trap to slip into. Fear of classes and homework, fear of living on your own for the first time, fear of making friends and fitting into this community we are suddenly a part of. But, the spirit of fear is not something that we are given by God, it is the adversary’s tool to prevent us from reaching our potential. In my experience, I have had a fear of taking action. How are we supposed to grow and progress to our ultimate goal of returning to Heaven without any action on our part? I hope and pray that as we all continue in our lives, that we remember where fear comes from. Nevertheless, let us not forget what spirit the Lord does bless us with. We have the powers of heaven behind us, a loving Father urging us forward, and inspired guidance to help us on our way.