Years ago I read something by someone (how's that for specific?) that I really liked. I forget who it was, so I apologize in advance, and if you know, please, enlighten me.
At any rate, this person (maybe Chieko Okazaki?) noted that when Alma the Younger was rebellious, he was called to task by an angel. Years later, that same Alma was discouraged. He was a prophet at that point and had given his life to the Lord. He had been turned out of a city and was getting ready to set his back on it for good.
An angel appeared to him and strengthened and encouraged him. He found out that it was the same angel.
I love that. The same heavenly messenger brought both reproof and comfort/praise.
In my own life I call that circularity and I love it. The Lord says his course is "one eternal round" so that makes sense to me.
Another example of this concept is from Elder Holland. (By the way, I'm too lazy to look citations up today. You'll just have to take my word for it). He talks about going to BYU as students and how lonely he and his wife felt, how homesick, how worried. They stood there in front of the President's home and felt overwhelmed. The same house where, years later, he and his wife would preside over the university.
Years and years ago, I wrote a manuscript for a middle grade fantasy novel. I sent it in to several places and it got rejected. And it should have. It's a good story, one I hope someday to polish. But it was badly flawed in many ways.
However, one rejection came with a personal note from the editor. The manuscript did not fit their needs but she said something like, "You have skill as a writer" and encouraged me to keep trying and to submit future works.
That letter has kept me going for the last 15 years or so.
I got an email the other day from someone who read my book. It was beautiful, heart-felt and complimentary note. Even better, it was complimentary about some specific things.
Yes, you guessed it. It was from that editor.
Circularity is awesome!
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