In biblical terms it is referred to as the Great and Dreadful day of the Lord. I have always found myself focusing on the dreadful and never on the happy. Often I found that our focus on the Second Coming and the events leading to it are generally of a negative nature.
This past week I was asked to teach Priesthood. The lesson was on the Second Coming. I wanted to focus on something other than the negatives. To help, in some fashion, others come to a similar understanding that I had recently reached.
This understanding begins with focusing less on the dreadful and more on the great. That refocus made the lesson incredibly challenging. Because most of the quotes are on the disasters and trials rather than on what good would happen. Not surprising considering the day and life of Joseph Smith was filled with challenges and struggles that few could appreciate.
As I reflected on this I remembered more of what President Hinckley taught, that we live in the best and worst of times. Using quotes from GBH made life a bit easier. The other side of the ledger was not trying to focus too much on the “We are only days away” ideas I have heard often from saints, as well as rumour mongering. (You know the urban legends about various general authorities saying we are not 50 years away from the second coming.)
As I studied and searched I still found it a tough go, but I did my best, trying to disuade talk of instant Second Coming because… (which turned out to be easy) yet the second part talking about the optimism seemed to be the part most struggled with. We so often think of the world as “The Worst EVER” that we cannot easily switch gears and think in positives. But as the lesson went on most I hope got the gist of what I was trying to say and how I was saying it.
Yes for some the Second Coming would be dreadful, but for the saints regardless it should be great, even if it is a trial.