Whenever I get a message in my Facebook inbox I get a little nervous.
Usually it's someone complaining to me about something I've posted.
I was pleasantly surprised when the message was from a friend who is
still currently attending church to keep the peace in the house. He
informed me that one time during church, the lesson contained
something incredibly profound. He stated that the teacher kept
referring to eternal life as "a pearl necklace from the priesthood."
After pondering this for some time now, I actually agree with this
metaphor and wanted to share my thoughts about it with the board.
Those of you who have received pearl necklaces in the past know that
it is an incredible gift - one that should be cherished. Unlike other
gifts, getting a pearl necklace is something that you'll never forget
- the memory remains as a warm creamy feeling as wonderful as the cool
pearls themselves felt against your warm skin.
What makes this metaphor so apt is that it shows how much god loves
his children too. If you'll remember, Mormon doctrine makes the
distinction between "exaltation" and "eternal life." Eternal life has
been granted freely to all of us thank to the atonement. When god the
Father and Jesus became one (the very definition of 'atonement'),
every man woman and child who has ever lived or will ever live
received the "pearl necklace" of eternal life. While Jesus may have
spilt his blood that day, the blessings of eternal life spilt all over
the rest of us. Whether we wanted it or not. Whether we deserved it
or not. Heavenly Father's love rained on both those of us who have
been very good and those of us who have been very very bad. That's
how powerful his love for us is.
Mormons understand that basking in Heavenly Father's love causes even
their very countenances to change. They have a glistening glow about
them. That's sometimes why there is so much strife between TBMs and
exMormons. We try to reject Heavenly Father's pearl necklaces - so we
don't have that same sheen of white, delightsome acceptance of love
that faithful Mormons do. Many of us have stopped kneeling in daily
prayer. We have become "prideful" to TBMs. They proclaim that only
by humbling ourselves can we truly feel god's love.
I'll remind you that the giving of the whole world the pearl necklace
of eternal life was only possible through the priesthood. While only
men can hold the priesthood, that doesn't mean that women can't enjoy
the blessings of the priesthood. In fact, according to Mormonism,
more women will help perpetuate the gift of pearl necklaces in the
future. As stated earlier eternal life was granted to everyone
freely. All women received pearl necklaces that great day. However,
exaltation is the ability to GIVE your own pearl necklaces to your
very own spiritual children. With plural marriage in heaven that
means that more women will have the privilege of helping their
righteous priesthood eternal companions give pearl necklaces for
And all of this was truly only possible thanks to Joseph Smith. He
was the one Heavenly Father selected to restore the priesthood in this
dispensation. Giving pearl necklaces had been lost until that other
great day when Joseph received the all the keys to the priesthood.
Now the accounts are somewhat confused about the details of the
restoration. However, it doesn't really matter if there was just one
personage, or if Joseph and Oliver were surrounded by the great men of
the priesthood throughout time. All that matters is that Joseph and
Oliver knelt in front of those men, had hands placed on their heads,
and then they were shown how to give the gift of an eternal pearl
And they did it all for us.