Elder Dale Renlund shared a little insight into what he spent his leisure time doing this summer: reading The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis. This book speaks of the decision we all have to make at some point between heaven and hell. At some point in our hearts, we have to choose to come unto God or to go the other way. Elder Renlund posted on his Facebook about how the grindstone of life creates many opportunities for us to choose heaven or hell in our hearts. Here is what he said:
I spent some time during our summer break time reading C. S. Lewis’s “The Great Divorce.” I was intrigued by much of what I read. One quote in particular that I have continued to ponder is:
“[Mortals] say of some temporal suffering, ‘No future bliss can make up for it,’ not knowing that Heaven, once attained, will work backwards and turn even that agony into a glory. And of some sinful pleasure they say ‘Let me but have this and I’ll take the consequences’: little dreaming how damnation will spread back and back into their past and contaminate the pleasure of the sin. Both processes begin even before death. The good man’s past begins to change so that his forgiven sins and remembered sorrows take on the quality of Heaven: the bad man’s past already conforms to his badness and is filled only with dreariness. And that is why at the end of all things, when the sun rises here and the twilight turns to blackness down there, the Blessed will say, ‘We have never lived anywhere except in Heaven,’ and the Lost, ‘We were always in Hell.’ And both will speak truly.”
Rather than have our mistakes, disappointments, struggles, and trials push us “downward,” we can use them to help us build toward heaven. That is what it means to come unto Christ. As we allow His atoning sacrifice to redeem us, heal us, and strengthen us, we become what we came to earth to become.