I saw a comic in the paper a few weeks ago. It showed a delinquent-looking teen standing in the hallway at school, who noticed an “in case of fire” alarm on the wall next to him. In the next frame he pulled the alarm, and in the next, school security dragged him away. In the final frame, he was sitting in the principal’s office, saying to another student, “I’m the kind of person stuff just happens to.”
We may at times feel like life is just happening to us, but every effect that is manifest in our lives has a cause. In fact, our very existence required a cause-something to set creation in motion: “… if there be no God we are not, for there could have been no creation. But there is a God…” (2 Nephi 11:7).
Nothing happens by chance, every circumstance has a cause. The exciting part of that is that we have far more control over the effects in our lives than we may realize. And by understanding the law of cause and effect, we can determine to be the cause of more good things happening in our lives.
The beginning of cause and effect is to determine what effect or result we want. When the picture of what we want is firmly in place in our minds, we have something to work toward. Even the act of creating the picture in our mind is a cause-a concentrated focus on the desired outcome will cause circumstances to align for the desired result to come into form (that’s the Law of Perpetual Transmutation). But there is more.
We may have a desire to eat at a nice restaurant across town. We may be in our car, focusing on the restaurant, feeling hungry and grateful for the opportunity to be enjoying a meal at this particular establishment. We may have everything ready for the result to appear in our lives, but if we do not turn the key in the ignition-use our physical abilities to bring about the desired result-the result we want will not take form. We cannot get what we want without putting forth some physical effort to receive. Even if someone were to take us to the restaurant and order a meal for us, we would still need to open our mouths before we could fully enjoy the food in front of us.
“Whatsoever ye sow, that shall ye also reap” (D&C 6:33). Our thoughts lead to actions, our actions bring our results. Starting with good seeds-good thoughts planted in our minds– is critical. But once the good seed is planted, our actions are what will bring us the results we desire.
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