It's strange how my epiphanies seem to be just me re-realizing things I had already learned and forgotten. Case in point, I want to be a Paladin. Now, that may not be surprising to long-time readers of my blog, but it was a bit of a surprise to me the other day when I was wracking my brain to try to find some kind of motivation.
At the time, I was trying to find some reason to keep a commandment that I didn't fully understand. I like to know the reason behind the rule, and in this case, I didn't, so I had to take the commandment on faith, and that just didn't set well with me. I wanted to follow the rule, but I felt like I wouldn't have the motivation to obey the rule until I knew why the rule existed.
Then I realized that there was one reason why I should want to obey that rule, and it had nothing to do with why the rule existed, which I still don't know. But even without knowing the reason behind the rule, I can gain the motivation to keep it by remembering whom else might obey such a rule: A Paladin.
Paladins are noble and self-disciplined. Paladins maintain high standards of honor and conduct. Paladins are chivalrous and pure. And Paladins obey the moral code they've sworn to uphold, even when the code seems obtuse and irrelevant. I could want to obey the rule, if only because it's one of the rules that I, as a Paladin, have sworn to obey, and because to do otherwise would be contrary to the nature of a Paladin. I could motivate myself to obey the rule because that's what a Paladin would do, and I want to be like a Paladin.
This isn't news to me. At least, it shouldn't be. I've known that I've wanted to be like a Paladin since before I went on my mission about ten years ago! I've known that I wanted to be a Paladin for almost all of my adult life! And yet, I had somehow lost sight of that, just as I had lost sight of the importance of daily studying the Book of Mormon. I suppose that's why the lessons in church like to revisit the basics periodically, with lessons on faith and repentance and the like. These things are surprisingly easy to forget.
Maybe I should put up some reminders where I'll see them, so I can remind myself again more easily the next time I forget that I'd like to be more like a Paladin.