Did we choose or agree to our earthly circumstances?
The concept of whether or not we were able to choose/agree to our earthly circumstances is highly debated by members of the Church. The reason this question is highly debated is due to the fact that we do not have any clear statement within scripture or from our prophets that would definitively suggest one way or the other. In order to come to any correct conclusion an individual must pray, fast, and then study the words of scripture and prophets to gain personal revelation on the matter, and even through this member’s feelings may differ.
In our scriptures we are taught that without agency there would be no purpose to our existence. We would not have the ability to act or be acted upon; as such, we know our agency existed in the pre mortal councils of heaven. With a little bit of research it would appear Joseph Fielding Smith once declared,
“We have no scriptural justification for the belief that we had the privilege of choosing our parents and our life companions in the spirit world. This belief has been advocated by some, and it’s possible that in some instances it is true, but it would require too great a stretch of the imagination to believe it to be so in all, or even in the majority of cases” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Way to Perfection, 44).
In light of this quote, as to my personal thoughts and feelings, I would assume it would be difficult to agree to choose our life’s circumstances, if we didn’t have the opportunity to choose our parents–our parents representing the primary element for the first 18 years, if not more, of our earthly circumstances and experiences as we first enter mortality.
Indirectly, however, it may be argued if we accepted Heavenly Father’s plan we also chose to accept our earthly circumstances and experiences on a whole. We were instructed in the heavens pertaining to this earth life. We were most likely instructed regarding the possible good and evil we may encounter or experience. In this light, one might say, “Yes, definitely, on a whole we chose/agreed with our earthly circumstances because we agreed to the plan given by our Heavenly Father.”