Does God really have a say in some of the things that go on in our lives?
I mean... I was in a bad place for a while. I was slow to make a decision I should have made a long time ago. Suddenly someone came into my life and that event inspired me to make my good decision. It was almost like God sent someone to force me back onto the path I should be taking. But of course he didn't force me, I made the decision myself. But it was definitely the right decision, and he (or HE?) helped me make it.
I guess you could say I complete him. He is living quite the successful life, full of promise and opportunity. He's a very talented individual, well-liked, consistently employed, very intelligent. You could almost say he led the perfect life, except he was missing one thing: a girl.
He told me once that I was a blessing -- a gift from God -- and since I came into his life his world has been a happier place. I appreciate that a lot, but it got me thinking. Is God responsible for this? Sure, you could say God is responsible for everything. I mean, he made everything and is definitely overseeing his plan. But is he really controlling every little thing that happens in our lives? I know some people who believe God is like a watchmaker. He's built gears and bolts and put them together, and after winding that baby up, he set his creation down on the table and let it tick on its own, without his influence. Now, I know that's not entirely true. God is aware of our individual situations, and he has sent us the Holy Ghost to help guide us through life and lead us back to him. I know the Spirit has definitely whispered to me the things I should do and the things I should believe. I also know Satan works th same way, and I have fallen prey to his subtle messages many a time. I just wonder if this guy is also a sign from God, or if he's just... well, a guy. Was he sent to me from or did we just happen to be in the right place at the right time? Does God allow coincidence? Is God a God of fate? Were my decisions to go to Sunday Game Night every week a prompting of the Spirit? When he asked me on the first date ever, was I inspired by some higher power to say yes? Does the Holy Ghost have a bigger impact on my life than I give it credit for? I suppose if you're really in tune with the Spirit, you'll find it gives you all sorts of guidance and direction that you otherwise would never have noticed.
This train of thought leads me to the idea of soul mates. Last week in church, a speaker re-iterated what apostles of the Lord have told us about finding a spouse. The one thing I got out of it was that there really is no such thing as a one and only. There are many people who could make great eternal partners, and there's always a second chance for a happy marriage, even if you let one great guy get away. You don't meet someone in the preexistence and decide then and there that you're going to get married on earth. You don't plan how you're gonna meet and what your wedding colors will be and what temple you're gonna get sealed in. It doesn't work that way. I used to think it did. I used to think that my parents and I were already family before coming here. But now I know that half the reason why we come to earth is to find a family, and to be righteous enough to live with that family forever. I have been blessed with a great potentially eternal family already. I have two parents who love each other, and two amazing younger siblings that I consider to be my best friends. I'm a lucky one. I had no say in how righteous my parents were going to be or whether or not I was going to be born under the covenant, but I ended up with a really good deal. Did God put me here? Maybe. Did I put myself here based on my valiance and obedience in the premortal life? That's a possibility. Either way, I had little control over it when I was born, and I still have no control over it now. My parents will always be my parents, and my siblings will always be my siblings. In the same way, my children will always be my children. All together under a holy marriage covenant ordained by God.
The only control I DO have over my eternal family is who I wish to share forever with as a spouse. I am beginning to realize how big of a deal that is. We're talking ETERNITY here. If I play my cards right, I could be creating worlds with someone. Worlds without number, countless numbers of children and creations and universes. All with one other person. It's a good thing we'll both be perfect someday, so I don't have to worry about whether or not he was cheating on me in heaven, or even stress out about his poor eating habits or level of cleanliness. But in the meantime, I am not a perfect person, and he isn't either. In the meantime, I gotta worry about picking someone that I can spend my whole imperfect earthly life with. Most importantly, I need to be picking someone who can get me to that ultimate goal: a marriage under the New and Everlasting Covenant given by the Holy Spirit of Promise. I worry the spouse I choose will not be worthy of such a promise, and that can affect my entire future, as well as the future of my children, my children's children, and so on. Yikes. That's a big decision. How am I supposed to know the man I pick is right? How am I to know that the decision I make will be the right one for my ultimate destiny and the ultimate destiny of my posterity? Holy cow. That's a HUGE DEAL. I almost want to just crawl in a hole and never meet anyone and never get married and never worry about it ever again.
But what is encouraging are these two things:
1. There are worthy men out there. Men who can bless me both temporally and spiritually. Not every man is a douche-bag, as the world may want me to think. I have already met one man who is a righteous priesthood holder who wants what's best for me and who loves God and puts Him above everything else. He knows how to repent and how to use the Atonement to better his life and how to learn from his mistakes. If I can find one so easily and effortlessly, I can find more. So if he doesn't work out, there's always hope. There's always a second chance. If I just keep doing what I think is right, I can be worthy of such a gem of a man either in this life or in the life to come.
2. God IS involved in my life. He DOES answer my prayers and send me signs and promptings and he will lead me to the right kinds of people if I just let him. I have the agency to pick the man of my dreams, but I can always ask God if the man of my dreams is right before I pick him. God's not just a watchmaker. He's my Father. My Father who knows everything. My Father who doesn't just see me as a poor, weak woman who keeps making the same mistakes over and over again, but a divine daughter who has the potential to be perfect just like He is. That's a wonderful thought.