(October 30, 2014)
Most of us look on temporal things most of the time (and I am no different – despite my efforts to focus on the Lord, I spend the majority of my time on temporal things). We seek to accomplish our temporal goals, and I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. I don’t think the Lord sees anything wrong with me trying to get in shape, or working to accomplish something at the office, or even with me enjoying myself by watching a football game. Temporal things are gifts to us.
The issue, though, is when temporal things become more important than spiritual things. If I was trying to get into shape and as a result took substances that violated the Word of Wisdom, or if I was working to accomplish something at the office and engaged in deception or dishonesty to accomplish it, or if I wanted to enjoy myself watching a football game and stayed home from Church to do so – when those things happen I am putting the temporal things before the spiritual things.
And, as Helaman points out here, when we put spiritual things before temporal things we find that the temporal ambitions are not hurt by this. From my own life, and as a simple example, I find myself enjoying doing the things that I love far more (now that I am progressing in the Gospel) than I did when I was spinning my wheels. I don’t have as much time to spend on the things that I love as I once did, and there are a number of issues that interfere, but because I have put the Lord first (to the best of my current ability – and I hope that I am able to better put Him first in the future) I gain more temporal satisfaction in less time than I did when I was putting my temporal satisfaction first.