The brother of Jared and his family have a problem.
About to embark on a difficult journey across the ocean in barge-like ships, they realize they don’t have a way to light the vessels. The brother of Jared is a faithful man who has received revelation on how to build the ships. So, he turns again to God. He prays, “O Lord, behold I have done even as thou hast commanded me; and I have prepared the vessels for my people, and behold there is no light in them. Behold, O Lord, wilt thou suffer that we shall cross this great water in darkness?”
The Lord’s response is an interesting one. Instead of answering the question, He asks His own. “What will ye that I should do that ye may have light in your vessels?” the Lord asks. He then seems to muse, stating neither windows nor fire would work. He even tells the brother of Jared his family will be swallowed like a while in the sea with mountain waves crashing over them. The Lord reminds him that He is preparing them for their journey. He asks again, “Therefore what will ye that I should prepare for you that ye may have light when ye are swallowed up in the depths of the sea?”
The brother of Jared takes the Lord’s invitation to figure out the problem seriously. He decides to make sixteen glass stones out of molten rock. He asks the Lord to touch the stones so they might be permanently illuminated. When the Lord does so, the brother of Jared is astonished to see the finger of the Lord. Because of his exceeding faith, the brother of Jared is permitted to see the full personage of Jesus Christ.
This account in the Book of Mormon is a beautiful reminder of both our power and the Lord’s to work miracles. Here are just a few of the lessons we can learn about God’s miraculous workings in our lives.
The Lord Reminds Us of His Goodness
Do you want to see the hand of God working in your life? Then it’s important to pay attention! When talking with the brother of Jared, the Lord affirms multiple times that he has prepared and will continue to prepare the way for their journey. To fully appreciate what the Lord is willing to do for us, we need to embrace what He has already done. Try and take some time each day to think about your blessings and how the Lord is answering your prayers. Not only does this open the door for more, but it can help give us patience as we wait for future miracles to occur.
The Lord Provides Clear Wrong Answers
The Lord can lead us to miracles by inspiring us to use our agency correctly. This often means there is more than one right path we can take. However, we shouldn’t be overwhelmed by the idea of making a bad decision or losing out if we do something wrong. The Lord will always warn us if we’re going too far down the wrong path. He clearly told the brother of Jared what wasn’t going to work – windows and fire. Take heart that God will lead you along and unveil His plan for your life without trying to trick you or frustrate you. Pay attention to the promptings you’ve been given and make sure if you know a clear wrong answer to not hold onto it.
Miracles Can Come From Our Weaknesses
Sometimes, we think there is a magical formula to figure out in order to receive God’s blessings. Whether it is being good enough, wise enough, faithful enough, we often put limitations on what God can do and when. The story of the brother of Jared teaches us that God can use our own ideas, even in our human frailties and weaknesses, to do great things. We just need to be willing to bring forth effort and to keep moving forward, especially when we can’t do our best or are struggling. Remember God can do anything and can bring His light into the most unexpected of places in the most unexpected ways.
Expect Something Better
The Lord touched the sixteen stones to illuminate them. This is miraculous in and of itself. The brother of Jared wasn’t expecting to see the Lord when he brought his humble offering. But he did. So much more is awaiting us than we can even imagine. Of course, we will struggle, face loss, and experience long periods of waiting. However, our hearts should have a foundation of belief in the idea that the Lord’s love, blessings, and miracles, will astound us. That we will be in awe of Him and what He wants to give us. As the brother of Jared also learns, the most important miracle we can experience is a true connection with Jesus Christ. This is much easier to build in our lives than we often believe or are willing to work towards.